INSEAD remained at #1 for 2017 but there were some major changes
1. Stanford GSB rose to 2nd
2. Harvard Business School fell to 4th
3. Cambridge Judge rose to 5th ahead of London Business School
Source: 2017 Financial Times Global MBA Ranking
For the second consecutive year, the FT named INSEAD’s accelerated 10-month program the No. 1 MBA experience in the world.
Stanford GSB replaced HBS to rank second, with Wharton in third place, and the University of Cambridge’s Judge Business School in fifth. Judge rose five places this year and 21 places in the past five years to gain its fifth-place finish, putting further distance between Judge and its top rival, Oxford’s Saïd Business School, which fell five places to a rank of 33rd, its lowest FT ranking since 2003 when it finished 35th. Only five years ago, Saïd was ranked 20th, ahead of Judge by six places.
This year the FT ranked London Business School, the only other non-U.S. MBA program to ever grace the top of its list, sixth. Columbia Business School, always a strong performed in this ranking, was seventh, with Spain’s IE Business School eighth, Chicago Booth ninth, and IESE Business School tenth.
A trio of schools in the top 25 each gained six places to finish substantially higher this year: IESE Business School in Spain rose to 10th from 16th, CEIBs in Shanghai, China, jumped to 11th from 17th, and ESADE in Spain improved to 17th from 23rd. Switzerland-based IMD lost the most ground, dropping eight places to a rank of 21st from 13th last year.
It was a tough year for U.S. business schools: Not only did INSEAD keep Stanford, Wharton and Harvard out of the top spot; only half of the top ten ranked institutions are based in the U.S., down from seven on each of the previous three annual lists. When the FT began ranking MBA programs, INSEAD finished 11th, and nine of the top ten schools were in the U.S., including first-place Harvard. This year, HBS lost two spots, sinking to fourth place.
The FT calculations on currency exchange which impact its salary data–a major factor in these rankings–were done in the fall before the more recent rise in the U.S. dollar which also hurt U.S. schools. Overall, the impact of the strengthening US dollar has yet to be felt in the FT ranking, with many European and Asian schools performing well in the top half of the table. Six of the top 11 schools are from Europe and Asia, with the other places held by the fabled M7.
Failing to win a top ten rank were a group of world class business schools that have long dominated the top of most rankings. They include: No. 11 Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, MIT Sloan and UC-Berkeley’s Haas School, both tied at 13th, No. 15 Yale School of Management, No. 18 Dartmouth College’s Tuck School of Business, and No. 19 NYU’s Stern School. Eight of the U.S. schools lost ground this year, while only four U.S. MBA programs improved their position.
Still, it was not all bad. U.S. schools occupy 51 of the 100 places on the list, up from 47 last year. Some 30 of the U.S. players were up, with 19 down and two maintaining their ranks from a year ago. Many American MBA programs did especially well. Indiana’s Kelley School rose eight places to finish 47th, Ohio State’s Fisher School jumped 12 spots to rank 63rd, Brigham Young University’s Marriott School advanced 15 places to finish 65th, Washington University’s Olin School gained 12 places to rank 68th.