Two Norway universities among Europe’s top 100

Two Norwegian universities have places within Europe’s top 100 after the Times Higher Education published its European University Top 200 Rankings.

Two Norway universities among Europe’s top 100
University of Oslo. File photo: Vegard Wivestad Grøtt/NTB Scanpix

The highest placed Norwegian institute was the University of Oslo at number 63, while the University of Bergen was ranked 92nd.

The Arctic University of Norway and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology also made it into the top 200 – a respectable Norwegian representation relative to population size.

The list, which is updated annually, is based on measures such as reputation for teaching, income and number of students and number of doctorates per staff member.

The two highest ranking Norwegian universities also made it on to the top two hundred of the international version of the Times list, which was released earlier this year.

The United Kingdom dominates the European list with 46 places in the top 200 including seven of the top ten. But other European nations seem to be gaining on the UK, with Germany landing 36 universities on the list. Sweden’s Karolinska Institute placed ninth, an impressive achievement relative to its population size.

“The rankings show that many institutions in Europe are equal in quality and reputation to some of the UK’s biggest names, but are on offer to global talent at a fraction of the cost and without the endless red tape.  With lower tuition fees, more relaxed visa options, and more and more degrees taught in the English language, universities in Germany and the Netherlands in particular offer outstanding options for international students,” said Phil Baty, editor of Times Higher Education Rankings, in a press release.

Map: Times Higher Education

“International students are hugely important to the health of any higher education system and the wider economy. Drawing in international talent helps universities to drive up teaching standards, and foreign students add a great deal to the overall student experience by supporting a rich, multicultural campus life for all students. They also spend money – on goods and services, accommodation and in many countries, tuition fees – and often bring vital skills to a national workforce after graduation,” Baty continued.

The full top 200 results and analysis can be viewed here.

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Why Norway is set to lose top spot on UN development ranking

Norway regularly takes the top spot on the United Nations Human Development Index, but a new parameter is set to change that.

Why Norway is set to lose top spot on UN development ranking
File photo: AFP

The UN’s Human Development Index (HDI) ranks countries on how well they provide conditions for people to reach their potential, using parameters including life expectancy at birth, expected years of schooling and gross national income.

Norway is top of the 2020 HDI, a ranking not uncommon for the Nordic nation.

The report, which comes from the UN Development programme (UNDP), ranks countries in relation to progress on the UN’s global development targets. Like it was this year, Norway is regularly ranked the world’s top nation by the UN.

Despite this consistency, Norway can no longer call itself the ‘world’s best country’ based on the ranking, national broadcaster NRK writes.

A new addition to the ranking will include the costs to nature and the environment of gross national product. That will make CO2 admissions and individual carbon footprints part of the broader assessment of development.

According to the UNDP, emissions are a new and experimental lens through which to view development. But the inclusion of climate and the environment gives the index a different look.

When CO2 emissions and resource consumption are factored in, Norway finds itself in a much more moderate 16th place on the UN development ranking.

The adjusted list is yet to be published by the UN, but the Norwegian national broadcaster has been informed of the new positions, NRK states in the report.

Norway’s CO2 emissions of 8.3 tonnes per resident are among the 30 worst values of included countries, and it also fares poorly in a measurement of material resource use per resident, resulting in a lower overall position.

“Norway loses its top placing because of our high imprint on the planet. This is an import debate and it’s time we had it,” Bård Vegar Solhjell, director of the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad), told NRK.

READ ALSO: Norway ranked world's top nation for 'human development'