The MBA in Europe – FT Ranking 2013
The MBA in Europe may not be an endangered program yet, but it has seen somewhat waning interest from top MBA applicants in recent times.
A weak economy and work permit concerns dominate the worries of international applicants thinking about an MBA in Europe.
The emergence of some more excellent MBA options in Asia, covered in the last part of this series, has further contributed to some Asian candidates preferring to stay closer home.
This does not impact top schools in Europe, however, and we at GyanOne believe that in spite of Europe’s economic condition, the value proposition of an MBA in Europe remains strong at least for top schools.
A listing of top programs for an MBA in Europe according to the Financial Times (2013) is:
|Rank in 2013||3 year average rank||School name||Country||Weighted salary (US$)|
|4||3||London Business School||UK||160988|
|6||5||Insead||France / Singapore||153992|
|7||8||Iese Business School||Spain||146049|
|11||9||IE Business School||Spain||157054|
|16||23||University of Cambridge: Judge||UK||145169|
|22||25||Esade Business School||Spain||126699|
|24||24||University of Oxford: Saïd||UK||136609|
|28||38||Warwick Business School||UK||120111|
|29||30||Manchester Business School||UK||114769|
|33||33||Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University||Netherlands||105546|
|38||36||Cranfield School of Management||UK||127911|
|40||37||City University: Cass||UK||117195|
|42||42||Imperial College Business School||UK||107032|
|57||61||Hult International Business School||US / UK / UAE / China||112520|
|61||The Lisbon MBA||Portugal||132606|
|64||Tilburg University, TiasNimbas||Netherlands||93859|
|64||76||University College Dublin: Smurfit||Ireland||110099|
|69||Mannheim Business School||Germany||98262|
|71||61||Lancaster University Management School||UK||96080|
|72||University of Bath School of Management||UK||99916|
|82||University of St Gallen||Switzerland||100814|
|84||70||Vlerick Business School||Belgium||94829|
|87||University of Strathclyde Business School||UK||108601|
|92||EMLyon Business School||France||94394|
Looking at the ranking, some clear observations that can be made are:
- Strong representation across the board: All across, 27 European programs made it to the FT top 100 in 2013, with 16 making it to the top 50, and 6 to the top 20. While the top 20 is still dominated by U.S. programs, top European programs that rank in this category have continued to largely hold their top rankings over the last few years, which points to the enduring value seen in these programs through the multiple parameters evaluated by FT.
- European MBA programs are organized in clusters: The FT Ranking 2013 reveals that European programs are organized into three distinct groups. The top programs all rank within the FT top 20 (with the exception of Oxford Said), while those ranked between 20 and 40 are quite similar in terms of their parameters. The last category is brought up by schools ranked 40 and below, which are again targeted by a similar set of applicants.
- The best programs are not just in the top 10, but in the top 20: Although LBS and INSEAD lead the pack, IE, IESE, Cambridge Judge, and IMD are also excellent options for the international applicant looking at an MBA in Europe. Rightfully, so is Oxford Said, thought it ranks a notch below.
- A slight wobble in rankings for top schools does not mean much: While most of the European schools in the top 30 dropped in rankings in 2013, there is not much to read in this slight change. Some programs that are otherwise popular with international applicants, such as Rotterdam (Netherlands), SDA Bocconi (Italy) and Lisbon (Portugal) may be lower in the ranking, but applicants looking at an MBA in Europe are still much more likely to shortlist them. Class diversity, affordability, and regional economic conditions play a big part in school selection.
- ESADE and Warwick are the star performers of the moment: Both of these programs have gained quite a few ranks on the FT Ranking, and are attracting international applicants through offering scholarships, career support, and international opportunities.
In summary, the MBA in Europe is still in good shape but top international applicants are not biting as much, except for programs in the top 30.
What can European schools do to win the sheen back on their excellent programs? For one, communicating the value proposition of the MBA in Europe, the career opportunities available to students, the impact of the economic situation in Europe,
and work permit norms as they apply in the respective country can help to a great extent. As an example, the Rotman School of Management in Canada has a Post-Graduate Work Permit Program,
which helps international applicants to look for suitable career opportunities without the constant threat of visa expiry pending a work permit weighing on their minds.