Canada has placed third in a new international ranking of colleges and universities.
The ranking was prepared by Universitas 21, an international network of 23 leading research-intensive universities in fifteen countries. The ranking looked at various measures of what constitutes a “good” educational system.
Canada placed third globally behind the U.S. and Sweden, and above international competitors for overseas students such as the U.K. and Australia, according to the report.
Canada’s position may have been higher, but was kept to third place due to lower ratings for the environment, a category that considers government policy and regulation, diversity and participation opportunities.
The countries with the largest proportion of workers with a higher level education are Russia, Canada, Israel, United States, Ukraine, Taiwan and Australia.
The ranking is based on 20 different measures researchers believe are critical to what makes a “good” high-education system, grouped under four umbrella headings:
• Resources (investment by government and private sector);
• Output (research and its impact, as well as the production of an educated workforce which meets labour market needs);
• Connectivity (international networks and collaboration which protects a system against insularity); and
• Environment (government policy and regulation, diversity and participation opportunities).
Canada’s position is based primarily on being ranked first for resources — a reflection of the level of investment into the economic system — and third for outputs. Government funding of higher education as a percentage of GDP is highest in Finland, Norway and Denmark, but when private expenditures are added in, funding is highest in the U.S., Korea, Canada and Chile.