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The goal of Project 5-100 is to maximize the competitive position of a group of leading Russian universities in the global research and education market.

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Project 5–100 participants promote Russian universities in THE rankings by subject

October 28, 2020

British–based Times Higher Education magazine has published the updated results of THE World University Rankings by subject on October 28, 2020. The representation of Russian higher education establishments has increased from 39 to 48 universities compared to the last year ranking. Twenty of them are participating in Project 5–100. Immanuel Kant Baltic Federal University is among the eight national universities ranked for the first time and is a participant in Project 5–100 as well.

The four best Russian universities in the top 100 THE subject rankings, include Moscow State University. M.V. Lomonosov (Art and Humanities – 72nd position, and Physical Sciences – 81st position) and three participants in Project 5–100:

1.     Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (National Research University) entered the top 50 in Physical Sciences (47th position) and scaled to 91st position in the top 100 in Computer Science (Informatics).

2.     Kazan (Volga Region) Federal University demonstrated considerable growth in the Education rating for the third year in a row – moving to 90th position in 2020.

3.     National Research Nuclear University MEPhI has once more stormed the top 100 of the best universities in the world in the field of Physical Sciences, holding the 98th position.

 “The advancement of Russian universities in the Times subject ranking is largely due to the Project 5–100 participants. So, 20 Project 5–100 universities provide more than half of all positions taken by Russian universities in THE subject rankings. The three of four Russian universities represented in the top 100 are also participants in the 5–100 Project. If we expand the range to the top 200, then the Russian share is even greater: nine of the eleven state universities included in the rating are part of Project 5–100. This fact proves the importance of an integrated approach to the development of all universities – a principle originally laid down the basis of Project 5–100. Only with universities that effectively perform educational and research duties and make a significant contribution to the development of the region, the whole higher education system can claim leading positions in the leading world rankings”, – stated Boris Filippov, the head of Project 5–100 Project Office, Acting Director of FGANU Sociocenter, Biology PhD.


Eight Russian universities ranked in the 101–200 rating range include:

·      Moscow State University. M.V. Lomonosov in the Computer Science (Informatics) (126–150), Business and Economics (151–175), Life Sciences (151–175), Education (151–175) subject rankings;

·      National Research University Higher School of Economics in the Law (126–150), Business and Economics (126–150), Psychology (176–200), Social Sciences (176–200) subject rankings;

·      Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University in the Physical Sciences (101–125), Engineering Sciences and Technologies (126–150), Computer Science (Informatics) (151–175) subject rankings;

·      National Research University ITMO in the Computer Science (Informatics) (101–125) subject ranking;

·      Moscow State Technical University named after N.E. Bauman (National Research University) in the Engineering Sciences and Technologies (151–175) subject rankings;

·      National Research Tomsk State University in the Arts and Humanities (151–175) subject ranking;

·      Novosibirsk National Research State University in the Physical Sciences (176–200) subject ranking;

·      RUDN University in the Education (176–200) subject ranking.

In 2020 THE subject ranking, Russian higher education was best represented in the fields of Engineering and Technology and Physical Sciences. A significant improvement in these subjects compared to 2019 was demonstrated by Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University, which entered the top 150 strongest universities in the world.

The one Russian university representing national higher education in the Law subject ranking is National Research University Higher School of Economics. This year, HSE has moved up to the 126–150 group. “The significant growth in the HSE Faculty of Law position in the Times Higher Education ranking in 2020 became possible thanks to the improvement of its academic reputation, including an increase in the citations of our professors in international scientific publications. According to the rating, our faculty is the best law school in Russia, and we have every intention to work our way to the top 100. Of course, a place in the rating is not a goal itself, but the qualitative changes leading to it. The main characteristics of this advancement are part of the developmental programme – the faculty reorganization framework laid down last summer. In the near future, we will focus our efforts on increasing the volume of our publications in international academic journals, involving more professors in fundamental and applied research, and creating a more attractive environment for international researchers and educators”, – said Vadim Vinogradov, Dean of the HSE Faculty of Law.

Several universities, previously represented in the Times subject ranking, have entered new subjects this year. For example, Novosibirsk National Research State University was able to get directly into the top 300 of the strongest universities in the Arts and Humanities subject ranking. National Research University ITMO entered the top 250 of the Business and Economics subject ranking. “ITMO is becoming a more interdisciplinary university every year, and our rankings performance reflects that”, – said Ilya Kuftyrev, Director of the Center for Ranking Studies at ITMO University. – “In the last few years, we have seen a steady growth trend of our academic reputation both as an educational and as a scientific establishment. And these improvements, which are the third of total points considered in the rating, are the reason ITMO now has the highest position since 2016”.

RUDN University was ranked in three subject ratings for the first time in 2020 and immediately entered the top 200 in the Education ranking. “In 2020, RUDN University entered the Times ranking in nine disciplines and Education, Art and Humanities and Life Sciences – for the first time. These achievements are important for RUDN. They are the result of well-coordinated work of the university's entire team for the past several years. I should point out that we achieved the best results in the Education subject in terms of Citation and Share of international students. The growth in the citation is a clear indicator that the research of RUDN scientists is relevant and interesting to specialists from all over the world. A similar situation exists in a new subject for us – Arts and Humanities. We received the maximum ranking for Citations and Share of international students as well. In the Life Sciences subject, RUDN University has also achieved high rankings by Share of international students and Share of international faculty members. This accentuates the global status of the university”, – said Elina Mun, Center for Ranking Research Director, RUDN University.

The Times Higher Education rankings rank universities in 11 subject areas: Social sciences, Economics and Business, Engineering and Technology, Computer science (informatics), Physical sciences, Medical sciences and health, Art and Humanities, Life sciences, Education, Psychology, Law. For subject rankings, the same 13 indicators are used, as for the global institutional rankings. They are grouped into five divisions: Teaching, Research, Citations, International Outlook and Industry Income. These indicators have different fractions in this ranking to take into account the specifics of a particular scientific field. For example, in the arts and humanities, where traditionally the number of publications is low, the Citation indicator has less weight. At the same time, in those subject areas where the number of publications and the number of citations is traditionally high, the Citations indicator fraction was, on the contrary, increased to 35% for physical sciences, psychology, life sciences, as well as for medicine and health sciences. For a university to be considered in one of 11 subject rankings, it is necessary to have a certain number of publications in the Scopus database (from 100 to 500, depending on the scientific field) during 2015-2019 period. Also, a certain minimum percentage or number of university employees (1%-5% of staff, or 20-50 persons) have to specialise in the relevant subject field.