The Challenge of Establishing World Class Universities

This report, focusing on world-class universities, examines the power of tertiary education for development from the perspective of excellence in research and scholarship at its most competitive levels. The report explores the emerging power of league tables and rankings in driving the tertiary education policy debates worldwide, and how these expand the perceptions of governments and university stakeholders of the purpose and position of tertiary education in the world. Global comparison indicators have gained significance in local development of universities, and countries no longer develop their tertiary education systems to serve their local or national communities. Thus, world-class universities are now more than just cultural and educational institutions—they are points of pride and comparison among nations that view their own status in relation to other nations.

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