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By Matias Ramos

Judging by the latest edition of the QS University Rankings’ Top 50 Under 50 list, there is a strong parallel between universities that have made a formal commitment to civic engagement and how positively they are ranked. Ten out of the 50 selected universities are members of our network. These universities, all founded in the last 50 years, execute a diverse range of impacting programs that are making a difference in local communities all over the world.

The highest ranked TN member on the list is Hong Kong Polytechnic University, which is listed at number six. An institution with a strong commitment to the advancement of the Talloires Network, Hong Kong Poly is represented in our steering committee by its president, Timothy Tong.  Last year, the university led the effort to form the University Social Responsibility Network, which will create a new cohort of institutions to create a shared and focused approach to civic engagement. Its “PolyU Has a Heart” program was among the winners of the 2012 MacJannet Prize.

Hong Kong Polytechnic University

Other notable universities with strong involvement in TN were also recognized. The Universidad Autonoma de Madrid is a leader within our network and was the only other member to be ranked in the top ten. UAM has been instrumental to the development of the University Volunteers Program, and hosted our 2011 global Talloires Network Leaders Conference. The University of Technology, Sydney (Australia) was ranked 14th in the list. They were among the recipients of the 2015 MacJannet Prize. Also of note is the Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, which checked in at number 32 and is one of the recipients of the demonstration grants that form the core of our Youth Economic Participation Initiative.

Here’s the list of all Talloires Network members that were recognized:

Ranking University Country
6 Hong Kong Polytechnic University Hong Kong
9 Universidad Autonoma de Madrid Spain
14 University of Technology, Sydney Australia
19 Queensland University of Technology Australia
22 Hong Kong Baptist University Hong Kong
26 Universiti Sains Malaysia Malaysia
32 University Kebangsaan Malaysia Malaysia
36 Deakin University Australia
38 Universiti Putra Malaysia Malaysia
46 Dublin City University Ireland

In the last few years, Talloires Network leaders have emphasized the need to advocate for consideration of civic engagement activities in how university rankings are created. Our steering committee’s chair and vice-chair, Anthony Monaco of Tufts University and Cheryl de la Rey of the University of Pretoria, authored a short piece for Times Higher Education last year. They wrote: “A more balanced, realistic, and productive assessment of university performance requires systematic attention to civic and social engagement.”