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HSE Makes It to THE Humanities Rankings for First Time Ever

The Higher School of Economics has made it onto the Times Higher Education ranking in the arts and humanities category for the first time ever. The university was in the 176-200 group, demonstrating the best result among schools that participate in Project 5-100 in this field. In addition, HSE placed third among Russian universities as a whole for this subject ranking.

The university was able to do this thanks to the fact that its international outlook rankings had risen more than twofold compared with the previous period. In addition, the Higher School of Economics’ reputation improved in the fields of teaching and academic research among foreign experts.

Given the pronounced country-specific characteristics of the humanities, advancing in international rankings represents a clear challenge for universities from non-English speaking countries. HSE’s recognition in the arts and humanities category of the global rankings is the result of the university’s incredible efforts to promote this field within the global academic space.

In 2015, a large Faculty of Humanities was created as part of several separate faculties within the realm of the humanities. The faculty includes research teams focusing on a wide range of topics, such as fundamental and computation linguistics, the history of philosophy and logic, literature studies, applied cultural studies, medieval studies, and WWII history. The research groups, which enlist the help of junior researchers and HSE students, have far-reaching international connections. The faculty regularly holds international conferences, and the number of publications in peer-reviewed academic journals is on the rise. Additionally, the faculty offers English-language master’s and post-graduate programmes, with interest in the programmes coming not just from Russian students, but from foreign students as well.

‘The humanities are a fundamental and traditional field for HSE. The university’s advancement in the subject rankings is not an easy task, and this is the case for the majority of schools from non-English speaking countries,’ comments Irina Karelina, HSE Director of Strategic Planning. ‘In order to improve the school’s academic reputation, you need publications that are understandable to the majority of the academic community, i.e., that are in English. This is much easier to do in mathematics or physics, but considerably more difficult in history or philology. It is no coincidence that there are practically no Russian universities in this subject rankings currently. In addition, it is even more significant that HSE placed in a fairly highly ranked group.’

Aside from HSE, the THE arts and humanities rankings included four other Russian universities: Moscow State University (ranked 51st), St. Petersburg State University (in the 126-150 group), Kazan Federal University (201-250), and Tomsk State University (201-250).

The arts and humanities subject ranking considers disciplines such as art, performing arts, design, languages, literature, linguistics, history, philosophy, theology, architecture, and archaeology.

The subject rankings are based on the same 13 performance indicators used in the overall world university rankings, and these indicators are brought together to form five separate categories. The methodology has, however, been recalibrated to suit the individual fields.

 

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