The Best Non-U.S. MBA Programs Of 2013

LondonfullpixFor the third time in four years, London Business School won top prize in Poets&Quants ranking of the 50 best MBA programs outside the U.S. INSEAD again came in second, while Switzerland’s IMD claimed third place. Two schools in Spain rounded out this year’s top five, with IESE Business School at the University of Navarra in Barcelona fourth and IE Business School in Madrid fifth.

Europe dominates the top ten schools, with two from the United Kingdom, two from France, three from Spain, as well as one each from Switzerland and Italy. The only exception: No. 9 Hong Kong University of Science & Technology, proving once again that after the U.S. the best place to study business and management is in Europe.

London’s dominance at the top–with INSEAD nudging it aside only once in 2011–is testament to a school that continues to prove that MBA students do not have to go to the U.S. for a world-class business education. The latest entering class of 409 students were chosen from more than 2,000 applicants. Nine out of every ten of them is from outside the United Kingdom, with 69 nationalities represented in the class. Each brings an average 5.5 years of work experience to the classroom, along with an average GMAT score of 695.


London’s graduating MBAs boast true global mobility. Some 53% of the Class of 2012 found work abroad, yet 92% of the class secured employment within three months of graduation at salaries that were every bit as impressive as the MBAs at Harvard, Stanford or any premier U.S. business school. Among the class’ major employers were McKinsey (hiring 36 LBS grads), Boston Consulting Group (31), Citicorp (12), Deutsche Bank (11), Bain & Co. (11), Amazon (5), and Google (4).

This year London Business School boldly announced its first comprehensive fundraising campaign to raise £100 million over the next five years to support a major expansion of the school. The money will be used to develop an iconic London building, Old Marylebone Town Hall, for the school, double scholarship aid, and recruit world class faculty, among other things. The Marylebone plans include the construction of an additional new three story building with six new lecture theaters, a library, 35 seminar rooms, offices, staff and faculty suites, student lounge, broadcast facilities and a new alumni center.


Outside of the top five schools, all of which were in the top five last year,  there were some notable gains made by several business schools. The University of Bath’s School of Management jumped 15 places to a rank of 28th, the single biggest leap of all the MBA programs outside the U.S. Hong Kong University of Science & Technology rose eight places to finish ninth, and the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management also gained a half dozen spots to achieve its highest rank ever in the Poets&Quants survey, at 21st.

There also were a few setbacks suffered by several highly prominent international schools. McGill University’s Desautels Faculty of Management School had the biggest dive, plunging 20 places to rank 31st. Durham Business School fell off the top 50 list entirely from a position of 38 last year. Double-digit drops also impacted EMLyon, Ipade, British Columbia’s Sauder School, and Manchester Business School.

This new P&Q list is a composite of four major MBA rankings published by Bloomberg BusinessWeek, The Economist, The Financial Times, and Forbes, all equally weighted. The ranking takes into account a massive wealth of quantitative and qualitative data captured in these major lists, from surveys of corporate recruiters, MBA graduates, deans and faculty publication records to median GPA and GMAT scores of entering students as well as the latest salary and employment statistics of alumni.

By blending these rankings using a system that takes into account each of their strengths as well as their flaws, we’ve come up with what is arguably the most authoritative ranking of MBA programs ever published. The list, which includes the recently released 2013 rankings by Forbes, The Financial Times, and The Economist, tends to eliminate anomalies and other statistical distortions that often occur in one ranking or another.

BusinessWeek, for example, ranks Queen’s University the fourth best MBA program outside the U.S. But the school is completely snubbed by Forbes, The FT and The Economist, which don’t even include the school in their rankings. The school’s exclusion from three of the four rankings doesn’t completely eliminate it from the Poets&Quants list, but rather than fourth, it’s more appropriately rated 39th due to its failure to get on any other major radar screen. In any case, the P&Q ranking measures the overall quality and reputation of the flagship full-time MBA programs at the schools, rather than the schools themselves.

The schools in Poets&Quants ranking are among the very best in the world. INSEAD’s latest entering class of 1,024 students in its superb one-year MBA program are no less impressive. With an average GMAT score of 702, the students represent 84 nationalities and each boasts five years of work experience. McKinsey & Co. routinely hires more than 100 MBAs out of INSEAD’s class every year, many of them sponsored by the prestigious firm to attend the school.

(See following page for Poets&Quants Top 50 MBA Programs Outside the U.S.)

  • LP

    Junzi, you may be on to something. Even though all four rankings are equally weighted, in general, John is biased towards BW since he worked there before. Strangely, Oxford Said gets a lot more air time in P&Q, BW and any articles written by John Byrne even though many would agree that Cambridge is equal to or better than Oxford by most measures (don’t listen to me, look at the data!). It would almost seem like Judge did something to annoy his highness and is therefore paying for it with a pound of business school flesh.

  • LP

    Spot on. The real test would be to measure selectivity of a program without counting Indian and Chinese applicants. All of a sudden, these schools will seem far less selective.

  • SR

    Thats because nearly 50% of the students enter via Reservation. The minimum an admitted applicant scored in IIM-A was somewhere between 30-35 percentile which translates to a NEGATIVE CAT SCORE!!! The remaining open category students via CAT and a handful(or probably even lesser) via GMAT, which obviously results in a unrealistically HIGH GMAT score.

  • scot

    CIEE vs IESE/IE how are they dfferent

  • Jas

    we are still waiting for that data John..

  • larry

    I am U S student looking at the full-time international MBA program at EMLYON, among others, like EDHEC in Nice and IE in Madrid. Are most European schools going to have weak career support? Where does your information come from on EMLYON grads needing on average more than 2 years to find jobs?

  • FC

    Insead is a good school, but clearly not the best. Companies for OBVIOUS financial reasons prefer sponsoring people to a 1-year MBA program which is WAY cheaper than a typical 2-year program.

    I am sure INSEAD will give you a good education, but it won’t be as good as the education offered by a top 10 in the US mainly because of time constraints.

  • FC

    If you attended an Ivy League School you would know that IVY is not spelled IVEY.

    Please don’t try to fool anyone.

  • John


    You wrote:
    “if The Economist did not rank McGill this year and had ranked it in the
    past, that general tells you something. And if a school falls 18 places
    just because of that one issue, it also tells you that whatever place it
    previously held in a ranking was fairly tenuous, anyway, for one
    ranking to matter so much”

    You are conflating two issues as one. You are in error to say that just because a school did not participate in a ranking therefore the previous place it held was fairy tenuous. That is absurd to even think so, and ridiculous that you can write this, try to pass this logical falalcy as a fact. You are false making up presuppositions and trying to pass that as objective non false premises. That is scary JohnAByrne. Even user scottino pointed this out to you as well.

    Your ranking system is flawed due to your methodology errors, statistical ignorance and biased towards unscientific economical systems.

    This is now the second article that I read where your inductive reasoning has been found to be fallacious. Now I KNOW not to read any more of your articles.

  • John

    Wonder why Laurie’s and your MOOC is not ranked here?
    or are they, and you refuse to tell us what rank it got? It is a free, or under $1k, elite MBA degree as you wrote in your article. So why is it not ranked here?

  • KayTee

    Please check the number of scientists working in NASA, computer engineers working in Intel, Google and other tech companies, doctors, professors and deans of the top US colleges who are from India.

    And to answer your question why we have less invention, discovery in modern times – it’s because we don’t have enough money to spend on research and development… You see, our countries (non European or American) were robbed and looted for 200 years by the smart and intelligent thugs who came with guns (the Europeans), so I find it funny that robbers and thugs are talking about why we don’t have money for spending on r&d and why we don’t invent something.

    Your ignorance is obvious When you say that everything is invented by the Europeans.

    Indians were doing eyes and brain surgery when the Britishers were painting their faces with blood using the cut off tails of foxes.

  • quickbuck

    I still don’t get it how these nations with high GMAT or whatever scores can’t invent or discover anything. Almost every theory, discovery, medicine, electronics, etc was created or discovered by europeans or americans of european heritage. Now you can check those GMAT scores!

  • quickbuck

    Are you really from HBS? haha

  • JohnAByrne

    We published this data for the top 30 programs in the U.S. in early December. Here’s the table for our story on the Best & Worst MBA Job Placement of 2013:

    For non-U.S. schools, this data can be much harder to come by because many schools don’t publish it. We’ll try to get it for you over the next couple of weeks.

  • ReedD

    Does anyone have the 3 month post-MBA employment stats for these schools ? Not so much as a detailed chart but a mere percentage number as to the number of students who were able to secure employments within months of their graduation ?

  • Vijendra Agarwal

    I don’t follow the MBA programs that closely nor I believe in the rankings being the only indicator of successful and good programs. However, I am surprised that India’s other IIMs have not made to the list of top 50.

  • ramipami

    Given your information that “aringo is famous for placing THE low gmat into the top school” I understand better why you are so familiar with them…

  • Tt

    Couldn’t agree more with sjean. It’s well known by those of us who work in Business Schools that many of our peers ‘play the rankings game’ and those at the top have the most resources to do so, ensuring they stay there. Rankings are killing competition in the sector, encouraging all programmes to act and look alike. All this is bad for the consumer and websites like this propagate them. On the other hand I have no sympathy for students who pick their MBA school largely based on its ranking – they don’t understand the methodology or the fact that a good School for one students is not necessarily a good School for another one

  • French_Incopetence

    All you are doing is confusing prospective candidates (mostly international) with such meaningless rankings. The Economist does the same on a regular basis. There cannot be a raking for non-US MBA programs. There can only be a global top 100 MBA ranking to show relative standing and a ranking of schools & countries, which are international students friendly. There are huge differences between MBA programs in US, Canada & Europe, where MBA as a degree doesn’t have much relevance even today. Beyond the MBA experience, the biggest problem is Europe is the support system (Career & Placement Services). Most European schools represented in these rankings fare disastrously on this parameter. Take the example of Em Lyon Business School in France, an elite school in France/Western Europe but with the worst possible career support for its MBA students. On an average it takes more than 24 months for its 32 participants to find a job. A nightmare for international students who pay for their choice heavily. Some schools on your list fare even worse but many international students will get fooled by the school’s presence on such worthless rankings and will freeze their chances of a better career.

  • Dagger

    This new P&Q list is a composite of four major MBA rankings published by Bloomberg BusinessWeek, The Economist, The Financial Times, and Forbes, all equally weighted. And S P Jain School of Global Management is ranked #19 by Forbes as Nicole mentioned.

  • lbs13

    I second that! I had Oxbridge and Ivy grads in my study group at LBS. But there were also grads from these places at INSEAD and other schools (Finance lovers from Columbia on exchange looking for jobs in London). Also this year numerous companies sponsored for visas in Western Europe including UK and continetal Europe. There are however a few companies who did say that they do not support for visas

  • Truth

    P&Q is better than to simply combine multiple rankings into one index. York University (Schulich) is ranked 8 and 28; University of Toronto (Rotman) is 11 and 46; IE Business School is 3 and 20. Perhaps, lack of education on part of the writer that he couldn’t elaborate?

    I’ve presented at a conference on the ‘gaming of rankings,’ and these rankings are truly a joke! If anyone is vaguely familiar with MBA Education, York and Rotman are both Top-20 North American rankings.

    I am educated in both Canada and U.S (Ivey League)

  • Manohar

    Did you do similar research for Indian B-Schools…I’m sure it would be significantly better than US scores

  • nicole

    The school you are talking about is the Mumbai based S P Jain (SPJIMR). The school ranked here is SPJain School of global management based out of Dubai,Sydney and Singapore . I just checked it out. Its ranked #19 by Forbes too…

  • A random guy

    It’s because IIM C,B or L may not have participated in the rankings. If you scroll down the rankings, the top ranked schools have participated in all of BW, FT, Forbes, Econ and the lowest ranked schools have participated in only one of these.. The frequency of ‘NR’ increases in the 3rd page…

  • HBSstudent

    That article is about undergrad

  • scottino

    “if The Economist did not rank McGill this year and had ranked it in the past, that general tells you something”
    Yes, it tells you that either McGill has fallen a remarkable number of spots, or else they have decided not to participate in the rankings this year.

    You falsely assume that because a school is not ranked that they were rejected or have fallen off the rankings. You fail to recognize that schools often do not appear on the rankings because the the school has made a conscious choice to not submit the required data, and therefore were not considered in the rankings. In other words, not appearing does not necessarily mean they have fallen off the list.

    For your ranking system to be credible it would have to compare only schools that were actually ranked by all four. Or else, create some sort of reweighing to account for those that do not appear by omission.

    Furthermore, your ridiculous rankings add no value in this space (since when is averaging four numbers together considered an intellectual contribution to public discussion). All you are doing is further perpetuating the misconceived assumption that all b-schools can be compared in a ranking on the same criteria, leading pre-MBAs to make decisions based on editorial subjectivity, and further encouraging schools to chase ratings rather than make meaningful improvements to their programs to improve their quality for current and future students.

    Based on the comments, it seems that most of the readers are sufficiently intelligent to see the gaping flaws in your ‘rankings’. I can only hope that pre-MBAs will see the same and not allow this drivel to influence their choice of b-school.

  • MS

    I think your data is incorrect in some cases, you have mentioned SMurfit (UCD) is not rated by FT. It is highly incorrect

  • CrosbyTee
  • HBSstudent

    Crosby – Wildly inaccurate comment. HBS doesn’t even use an A-F grading scale. Go check the HBS FAQ. And category 1s are very difficult to earn.

  • RB

    Queen’s University is not snubbed by FT and Econ. Queen’s School of Business does not participate in their rankings. It is surprising that even though in Canada Queen’s is ranked number 1, over and above Ivey and Schulich, but P&Q ranks it much below these schools.

  • Abbytherainmaker

    pls give name of this friend

  • AbbytheRainMaker

    what is the Methodology? You have a school like SP Jain which sometime is NOT even Ranked in Top 10 in India.. scoring above the 2nd (IIM Calcutta – current Pepsi CEO – Indra Nooyi from this school, Wharton’s Dean from this school, Kellogg’s dean from this B-school) , 3rd (IIM Bangalore) and 5th ranked schools (IIM Lucknow)

    This is all humbug !!!

  • winner

    The GPA considered is at the undergraduate level. A GMAT score of 720 gets you into Mensa; Mensa does accept GMAT scores. At 720, IQ is at 132 which is enough to get you into Mensa. The Top 10 US business schools have an average GMAT score of 715 and their average GPA is 3.56 which translates to an IQ of 131.

  • CrosbyTee

    You don’t seem to realize that grade inflation is rampant in the top US B-schools. At Harvard everyone gets an A average.

  • winner

    Did my own research on determining IQ using average GPA numbers for top US and Canadian business schools. Here are the results:
    Top 10 US business schools — average GPA 3.56 which translates to an IQ of 131
    Top 6 Canadian business schools — average GPA of 3.33 which translates to an IQ of 126.
    A difference of 5 IQ points is significant.

  • winner

    The average GMAT score of IIM, Bangalore students is 780. However, it is not included in the rankings. The average for IIM, Ahmedabad is 767 — this school is included in the rankings.
    Source for GMAT score: a QS MBA publication

  • Sam Vloeberghs

    Vierick != Vlerick?

  • John Goldberg

    I’m surprised that INCAE is not on the list.

  • Rami

    Aringo says it clear in term of GMAT, aringo is famous of placing the low gmat into the top school. most admits at insead of aringo clients are in the low 600s!! I have been told that this year insead acceptance rate for 2013 and 2014 is more than 60%. thats explain the increase of the class size to almost 1100!! they are killing the degree!!

  • Guest 238162389

    Sorry, that should say “won 3 races with no prestige”

  • Guest 238162389

    Agreed BlakeJ. This methodology (while noble in spirit) is highly suspect. This is equivalent to saying that Usain Bolt isn’t the best sprinter in the world because he only ran 20 races (totally made up number) and and won most of them while some other schlub ran 100 and ran 3 races with no prestige.

    I direct you to the Schulich/Cambridge comparison. Schulich had only one top-10 (the Economist, who cares) but was 11th overall because they participated in all 4 rankings. Cambridge performed OBJECTIVELY better than Schulich in 2 out of the 3 rankings where there was comparable data and on average for all 3 of these rankings. YET, because they didn’t participate in the 4th, they ranked lower.

    Here’s the math:

    Cambridge average ranking for FT, Forbes, Economist: 9th
    Schulich for the same: 19th
    Schulich for all 4: 18th
    Cambridge average ranking if they had been ranked in BW at #50: #19th

    Are you sure you aren’t unduly tanking schools that don’t participate by making a blanket and baseless assumption that even though they were top tier in all other rankings, somehow they would get obliterated in the 4th?

  • guest1129037

    Real problem is this “outside the US” ranking system that assumes American schools are inherently better for some reason. It’s like saying “here are the 100 best vacation destinations that aren’t Paris”. Yeah, Paris is great, but so good that you can’t even compare it with other places? I don’t think so.

  • JohnAByrne

    If a school only “chooses” to participate in one or two rankings and is therefore not ranked in the other most influential lists, I believe the school should be penalized for its decision which in all likelihood is based on the fact that it wouldn’t do very well in the rankings it chooses not to participate in. A school that is ranked across the most followed rankings has a much stronger brand and reputation than one which picks and chooses a ranking that it would obviously perform best in. The absolute best schools don’t need to cherry pick a ranking.

  • guest1129037

    hahaha I actually LoLed

  • MBAme

    same as Queen’s. Only participates in Businessweek. You would think that “the most authoritative ranking of MBA programs ever published” would know how the other rankings they aggregate and blend actually work.

  • ramipami

    It seems there is no point arguing with you as you simply don’t get it…

  • Rami

    Aringo say clearly the total number of clients applying and those who got accepted! and the surprising thing is that INSEAD has the biggest number something >100 and close to 95% are accepted!

  • Piere

    It is not reliable ranking! economist is far more credible than it.

  • rs300

    Why are you not including the TopMBA Global 200 business schools Ranking in your compiled ranking? Actually, you don’t even talk about this ranking, do you?
    As a prospective student, it was what I considered the most relevant ranking as it is based on Recruiters’ opinion about MBA participants. In fact, it gives indication on market value of an MBA after graduation.

  • Ramipami

    Your reasoning is extremely weak! What if Aringo had only 10 clients applying for INSEAD and 9 of them had GMATs of 790 as well as being the son of Fortune 500 enterprises? Without knowing more about the clients of Aringo applying to INSEAD and other schools I do not see how you can infer anything about the high acceptance rate at INSEAD …

  • BlakeJ

    Some schools have never participated in some of the rankings you included – by choice. Are they now a price of business? Let’s be honest, the methodology is more open to interpretation and alumni coaching in some rankings than in others. I respect a school that doesn’t participate in a ranking with methodology that wouldn’t pass a basic research objectivity test. In addition, the rankings take a lot of resources that could be better spent on the student experience.

  • sjean

    Ivey states on its website that they only participate in two rankings by choice – FT and BW. It is not a matter of not qualifying for Forbes and The Economist.

  • sjean

    It is important to note that some schools do not participate in particular rankings by choice; it is not that they did not qualify. Everyone in the higher education industry knows that schools are “gaming” the rankings to a point that is unethical and unbecoming of their reputations. Alumni are equally culpable in this game and in some cases, take the ethics burden off the hands of the school. If you are familiar with the methodology, it is easy to see the rankings that are simplest to game with no risk because the rules are open to interpretation. There is also no audit process so there is no risk of consequence. Is this a new reality for business schools?

  • deadlycat

    1st page of the article “This new P&Q list is a composite of four major MBA rankings published by Bloomberg BusinessWeek, The Economist, The Financial Times, and Forbes, all equally weighted.”

  • Crook

    You didn’t understand that guy is not from INSEAD? He has that attitude ’cause some of you don’t get it. MBB is recruiting + sending lots of students there and you still perceive it inferior, and let’s face it you don’t study smth different in other top schools. If this school has many sponsored students why don’t you talk about S and especially H that have many mom&pop little kids there who got nice jobs after graduation not because of the school.

  • SingMBA

    this behavior of insead students, fans, explains why it far behind!! if i am a prospective applicant, such attitude will definitely pulls me away from the school.

  • Rami

    NO, aringo stats (their own clinets) is actually >90% acceptance at insead. while its much much lower in many top american schools such as haas and tuck, 40 to 50 %! remember this is about aringo clients not the whole class. all the admissions consultants believe that the acceptance rate at insead is the highest among the top school. and therefore, it is the less selective.

  • primadonna

    I have no idea why Aringo would be an authority on this, but even they put an acceptance rate far lower than the one you mention…

  • Regent

    Why would you base your perception of the quality of a school on the “success rate” of its career services team?? Would you spend 1-2 years of your life and thousands of $ to for career services “to get you a job”?

    On the more important metrics, namely the quality of teachers and students at INSEAD or LBS have nothing to envy from the very best US schools. Just check some of the faculty names and compare them to your beloved US schools…

    As for the students, many people on this (let us not forget – US based) website seem to think that sponsored students are not a sign of quality?! Just remember that companies – and not the lesser ones – are willing to pay a lot of money to send them to INSEAD and LBS. This means they are among the brightest people in the job market…

  • a dude

    what is aringo?

  • Whattt

    For the record, I went to a top 3 US bschool. I can tell you INSEAD and LBS are at par, looking from a top US MBA candidate’s perspective. My school is not inferior to any other school. Feel sorry for your own life.

  • a dude

    What is Aringo?

  • MBACrazy

    Order up. One guest pass to College Confidential please…
    Great debating skills. I am left speechless.

  • Whattt

    Are you crazy? Oh wait you may be. End of convo. I am not coming down to this topic because I don’t need to repeat the facts. You ladies check them out yourselves.

  • Whattt

    For the record, I went to a top 3 US school. The “random people on the internet” seems like just one person behind a screen. Maybe it’s you. I like shoving down people’s throats what I know to be true and cannot stand pathetic people who come up with creative ideas and I feel the urge to put it off like a wildfire. Why am I then so gung-ho about INSEAD? Well, first off, I know what’s right and wrong. Secondly, I went to the school on exchange so it is near and dear to my heart. End of convo. I do not want to hear any more inferiority complex stories, excuses to go here and there and absurd claims from you trolls.

  • MBACrazy

    Have you tried College Confidential? I am confident that you will find your views of which schools are better than others well received by many on that site – it being age appropriate material. Additionally, your primary argument of “that’s just the way it is because I say so” is quite popular as well.

  • Whattt

    I have seen plenty of non-EU students getting jobs in EU, including the Western Europe.

  • Whattt

    Ivy and Oxbridge grads also go to LBS and INSEAD..I don’t go to LBS nor INSEAD. Some of my friends did and I partied there so I know

  • Whattt

    How do you know that? By the way, the general public doesn’t even know what LBS is either because they are stand alone business schools. When I said the general public, I meant the general business school audience. Certainly, the general public will only know Harvard and Yale or maybe MIT but never the rest.

  • Whattt

    I don’t need to explain what INSEAD is because I didn’t even go to INSEAD. Berkeley, MIT and Columbia are better known because those are universities, not a stand alone business school like LBS or INSEAD. You guys are just too immature and insecure yourselves, not me to admit that INSEAD is a better school than Berkeley, MIT or Columbia.

  • John

    Says the insecure INSEAD troll who spends a lot of his time arguing with random people on the internet over how prestigious his school is. Yeah, Emory is not a top school, but who cares? I had forgotten how pathetic some of the MBA students are and how desperately they need to cling to some piece of paper just to feel accomplished and better than everyone else. And how much time and energy they will spend in such arguments just to defend their fragile sense of self worth. Talk about low self esteem.

  • hs

    You seem like a typical insecure MBA student who needs to put down other schools just to make himself feel better. Good luck trying to explain to random people at cocktail parties what exactly INSEAD is and that it is as prestigious as Harvard or Stanford. Even schools like Berkeley, MIT and Columbia are more well known than INSEAD. I’d rather go to LBS, which has better name recognition.

  • gto

    ‘INSEAD Students seeking global opportunities’ = mostly non-EU students who have to go back to their home countries in Asia, Africa or Latin America because they cannot get a visa to work in Western Europe.

  • Lucky

    LBS has a better brand and is more well known. To most people INSEAD is just some odd abbreviation and not on par with London Business School in terms of prestige. Get over it. You chose the inferior school and now you are just rationalizing. I feel sorry for you but that’s life.

  • Glade

    Ivy and Oxbridge grads go to HBS, Stanford or other top US programs. INSEAD is not that prestigious compared to the best American schools.

  • that

    Berkeley, Duke, and NYU are world-class institutions, and they are better known around the world than INSEAD. And getting into INSEAD is not harder than getting into them. Judging by stats alone, the average student at INSEAD would have a hard time getting into Haas, for example.

  • op

    The general public’s view? Like that of your grandma or your aunt? Lol. The general public doesn’t even know what INSEAD is. LBS is far ahead of it in terms of name recognition among the general public, especially in the biggest MBA market in the EU – the UK. Sure, there may be some students at these schools that are M7 caliber and attended just because they wanted to study in Europe, but the quality of the rest of the students is on par with the US MBA programs in the 9-16 range. Except for some students who worked at top consulting and IB shops, most students at INSEAD are not that impressive and the school is not that hard to get into.

  • Whattt

    Tuck, Haas, Fuqua, Darden and Stern are second tier schools at best. Guy, stop posting with however many different IDs you have. I am tired of you arguing about non-sense

  • herald

    top tier schools worldwide are the us m7. then the tuck, haas, fuqua, darden, stern. then the others including insead and lbs but at best between 17 to 25.

  • Whattt

    Oh stop. That’s coming from somebody who went to Emory or alike in the third tier. Stats and student quality at LBS and INSEAD match M7 and that is the general public’s view. End of convo.

  • PP

    It is easier to get a job in Europe coming from a US school than a job in the US coming from an European school. US higher education has a pretty good reputation among employers and is known to be among the best in the world, like it or not. Emory might seem like second or third tier when you compare it to the numerous top US schools, but in terms of stats and student quality the school is as good as the top EU ones and better than most schools in Europe.

  • Paul_CH

    “inferiority complex”!!…. what an attitude?!

  • Whattt

    Hey stop trolling. You keep posting with different names but we can tell it’s all you. I am sorry that you went to Emory after rejections from LBS, INSEAD and the other top 30 US business schools but your whining here online won’t help you get over your inferiority complex.

  • Paul_CH

    even with very conservative view, it doesn’t reach this number!! some reality please!

  • Whattt

    I also brought back future MBA students and discounted them at 0% (because we are talking about people) with a growth rate of 0% to be conservative

  • Paul_CH

    you seem to be very exaggerator in judging!! all the mba students in the past and present times are in hundreds of thousands or less! from where did you get a Billion?!!

  • Whattt

    I disagree. I think you are wrong, starting with your very first sentence.

  • Whattt

    Yeah that’s you. 1 in a billion

  • molan

    I’d choose Emory over insead and LBS any time! the best education is in america.

  • Paul_CH

    Darden is a top tier school, the reason some naive people can’t see that is because the large number of top b schools in US compared to Europe!, Darden grads got jobs at top consultants firms, banks, and PE/VC, and more.. I would be comfortable to say that any top 20 american school is better than all the top 1,2,3, schools in Europe for many reasons, belonging to universities, large endowments, mature alumni bases, the culture of MBA in US, the dominant economy of US, and the nature of education life there. ALL the european b schools are COPIES of the US model of MBA and business education! Just to mention, most of leading business cases publications such as HBR, MIT MR, CMR, all are american. many if not all of the top MBA recruiting firms are based in US, and hence the connection with the headquarters of those companies is much easier in US school than european schools. the reason behind the appearance of INSEAD and LBS is very clear, they are the best in europe NOT in the world, there are no other good schools in europe except them, yet, they are far behind the top us schools. at best, they are comparable to the top 20 to 25 schools!

  • Whattt

    72% response rate means what? those who responded to the employment questionnaire? You have to be careful here. Quality doesn’t equal quantity. You don’t know what jobs those INSEAD or Darden students were aiming at so you can’t just make an apple to apple comparison. What if Darden students were looking for a job at Walmart as a financial analyst versus INSEAD students looking for jobs at private equity firms and alike in London/Paris/Frankfurt? First of all, INSEAD is a top tier school while Darden is a second tier school at best. I would also think that INSEAD students probably seek global opportunities while Darden students look for US opportunities at best, given the limited reputation of the school in the DC area and in the vicinity, compared to other top tier institutions in the US and globally. Deducing the quality of an MBA program or school, solely based on statistics regarding the use of career office, is prone to a substantial flaw.

  • Whattt

    Emory is not even a second tier school while LBS and INSEAD are both top tier schools. HEC Paris is known for its undergrad, not for any master’s. I don’t think Emory grads will get jobs in Europe, let alone getting a decent job in the US.

  • Vlad

    My suspicion is the US schools get a lot of applications from indians and chinese thus inflating those numbers. Also they are the best in marketing the schools, so many guys are applying just to brand themselves even if the ROI is against them.
    Just look how they are arguing about which one is better, how much “passion” they put into it. Exactly that type of passion I saw in Apple fans, they always shout and scream compared with the buyers of other products.

  • Paul_CH

    INSEAD send >1000 graduates to the market PER YEAR, this is how people define a CLASS. it is about how many graduates PER YEAR!.
    Yes, if the majority of the class are sponsored students (in fact, well prepared, well educated, business experienced, and need little education), then it is NOT good sign about the program! Why, because the prospective applicant (who is not sponsored) will question the value the school really add to the students?! Let us look carefully at the INSEAD latest employment report: out of the 1000 students, there are roughly 300 sponsored students! out of the remaining 700, the report say that 72% was the response rate that means something around 500 students. of those 500 there was a 92% jobs offers, means something around 460 or 470 students! NOW, INSEAD said in the report that the jobs that came from the school activities were about 52%, Look at this percentage! it means the school managed to get roughly 230 students a jobs! that is not a good sign at all! and I strongly believe that many insead students who are not sponsored really suffer from the job search and face tough reality! Compare these numbers with say Virginia Darden for example! you see big difference in favor of the US business schools. In conclusion, I believe the INSEAD mckinsey partnership is big trap for the prospective applicants!

  • Paul_CH

    IMO, Emory is better than any european schools. well established, long history, loyal alumni, better location (US vs Europe) and then better opportunities. More, it is american education institution, which naturally better than any european institution. if someone graduate from US then he/she will have opportunities inside and outside US, but from european school, he/she will have opportunities in europe BUT limited (if any) in US. Look at any employment report of any top 30 US school, you will see easily that they have salaries similar or more than european schools. in short, an MBA is american thing and the best is in US. european don’t like it, they regard master of management higher than MBA, you see this in HEC Paris management master and St Gallen master of management and economics. so, to be honest I see no reason to pursue MBA anywhere outside US.

  • Whattt

    I doubt 40-45% is the actual admissions rate at INSEAD but if you haven’t met anyone who hadn’t gotten rejected by INSEAD, the rate would be closer to 100%. I met a number of rejects. By the way, I don’t know who keeps saying INSEAD has a class of 1000. Its class size is 500 split into two campuses. INSEAD is definitely European, so of course, non-US, and is indeed prestigious. If you were a McKinsey consultant from an Ivy or Oxbridge or any other top-notch undergraduate, you would not think of going to a lesser business school for your MBA. Have some brain, people! I don’t know where this idea of sponsored MBA being not as good came from.

  • Whattt

    Emory over INSEAD or LBS? Come on. That’s a stupid comparison

  • Whattt

    I disagree. I sat in for classes at Kellogg and Yale amongst others and I would say INSEAD faculty’s classes are superior. Life experience is a very subjective opinion so I have no comment there. I do not understand what you mean by maturity.

  • Gerald

    My friend graduated from INSEAD 3 years ago, he moved very fast in his career after MBA, but when I asked him about the INSEAD experience he told he would have chose any top american school over insead! he didn’t say bad things about the school but he wasn’t happy during his study there and later he realized that american schools are much mature, has greater quality in teaching and better life experience as whole!

  • Whattt

    I haven’t met any sponsored students who graduated from INSEAD and complain about their experience. So I wonder where you are getting these complaints from.

  • Prima

    many admission consultants approximate it like that! in fact the aringo website clearly shows very high admission rate at insead. Also, insead is dying for higher ranking, so I strongly believe that if the admission rate is strong then they will publish it. I personally didn’t meet anyone who got rejected by insead. a class of 1000 students for a non us and not so prestigious school is nowhere close to selective.

  • a dude

    Mind sharing your rationale and your source for the 40-45%? Am not convinced by either…

  • Ryan S.

    Uhhhh I hate to break it to you, Ivey is a great school because it’s one of very few reputable schools within Canada. As a result, it’s one of basically two (arguably three schools) that the banks and consultancy firms can draw on. The others being U of T and maybe york.

    But in a global context, it’s by no means a remarkable school. Lol, and also clearly you don’t understand the methodology. They didn’t rank anyone, they just averaged the ranks of other rankings to offset shortcomings in the other ranking’s methodology.

  • PlasmaER

    they do! but unfortunately it always too late! many many of insead students are actually unhappy with their experience, but they have no choice but to continue..

  • Whattt

    Bullshit. Employers who are sponsored have choices. They are not forced to go to INSEAD over others. Those who are sponsored choose to go to INSEAD and I don’t think those who went to INSEAD with sponsorship complain about how fragile the school is

  • Johnny

    Ok, I understand what you say, but if employers are paying it means is enough education for them and the more valuable programs offer smth that’s not needed or not worth it the price I guess.

  • JohnAByrne

    I don’t see how your point of view discredits our ranking system. The fact that a school is no longer ranked by one of the five most influential rankings is an important piece of information in and of itself. It is highly consequential if you are into the rankings game. So yes, if The Economist did not rank McGill this year and had ranked it in the past, that general tells you something. And if a school falls 18 places just because of that one issue, it also tells you that whatever place it previously held in a ranking was fairly tenuous, anyway, for one ranking to matter so much.

  • scottino

    Here’s a fact that completely discredits this ranking system. Schools are not completely snubbed by rankings, “falling off” from one year to the next. Schools strategically decide not to submit rankings. Often the reason is because they can anticipate a negative ranking and would rather be omitted. Therefore, combining multiple annual ranking reports where there is no data on some schools will greatly benefit only those schools that did appear in all four rankings.

    For example: ‘McGill University’s Desautels Faculty of Management School had the biggest dive, plunging 18 places to rank 29th.’ This is because Desautels did not appear in the Economist rankings this year.

  • Polar

    No, because it is cheap and insead gives huge discount for employers! if sponsoring companies stopped sending students to insead then it will collapse! thats a bad sign for school and shows how fragile is it.

  • rymond

    sorry, would not help at all !! :))

  • rymond

    totally agree. brand is something unique and jumping from singapore to abu dhabi would help at all 🙂


    BW doesn’t like Cambridge! It is name is a monster for all universities! if Cambridge MBA got small light on BW then say bye to many top US schools! It is Cambridge, the holy land for the modern scientific civilization. even its been just 20 years old, even it isn’t accredited by AACSB, even with lack of resources, it still Cambridge, that brand which makes it more selective than INSEAD and London! at the end of the day, MBA is about brand, imagine if Princeton launched its MBA tomorrow!! I bet it would have tremendous number of applications!

  • CANADArrow

    How come Western Ontario (the oldest MBA outside US) would be ending in such terrible rank?!! some sense please! every single top consultant firm and banks consider Ivey as good as top 20 US school and by miles ahead of any non us school! I can’t believe the editors of this rank had the courage to place it in such low place!

  • Paul_CH

    It definitely gives true and accurate indication of the school quality. There is very big difference between school that helped 75% to 88% of its grad to get jobs and a school that only helps half or less! It means many things about the school brand, influence, recruiters view..many top american schools are by far ahead of all top european programs in this field. regardless the schools names, recruiters view an MBA as american thing and the best is in US! the culture is different, endowments, professors quality, etc.. all different in friend got accepted in the top 2 european school but he chose to g to Emory University in atlanta! he told me that anyone visited the school would easily notice the difference!

  • Watcher

    Thats explain the high acceptance rate at INSEAD, something between 40 to 45%!!,

  • Johnny

    So what?! Exactly this proves that employers perceive it at the top, otherwise they’ll send them to another school. It seems the sponsoring companies think 1yr MBA is enough to get the skills and maybe 2yrs MBA is for those who change careers. For me exactly this is the best measure to value a program, the best companies trust it and pay for it, in the case of the other ones the brand attracts and the people pay themselves.

  • JohnAByrne

    Some schools include this number in their employment reports–but not everyone does. So it would be a major collection project. I think it’s definitely worthwhile for a story. Just a quick glimpse at this issue seems to suggest that INSEAD has more sponsored students than most top schools. According to the school’s 2012 employment report, about 22% of its graduates got their jobs with previous employers. That compares with just 7% at Stanford. This is most prevalent in consulting where companies are using the INSEAD degree as a one-year shortcut to an MBA. INSEAD’s report shows that 39% of the grads it put into consulting last year returned to their previous employer (vs. only 9% among corporate sector hires and 17% among finance hires). Of the 108 MBAs who went to McKinsey last year, 51 were sponsored. Of the 61 who went to BCG, 24 were sponsored. At Bain, 16 of the 52 INSEAD MBAs were sponsored. At Booz, the percentage was very high: 15 of 24. This is lucrative for a business school because they don’t have to invest as much in career services and development as well as scholarship money. At INSEAD last year, for example, only 53% of the MBAs got their jobs through a school source. The more typical pattern is that 75% of the grads land jobs through the school’s efforts. It is as high as 88% at the University of Virginia’s Darden School. Hope this helps.

  • MGR

    Hi John,

    Is there any way to discern the number of sponsored students in a give school/class?

    I’m interested because I believe this would have a direct influence on employment post grad.


  • JohnAByrne

    We use “best” and “top” to mean the exact same thing: These are–by and large–the very best full-time MBA programs in the market.

  • FAIff

    John, for the US schools, the title is the “TOP” 100 US .., but for the non us, the title is the “BEST”, is there any difference so that you couldn’t use the same title for both?!

  • Junzi Wei

    May be I am wrong since I didn’t do a objective research, but my gut feeling is John (who puts up this P&Q ranking) weights BW to be the most important ranking. Although Judge and Said are comparable, Judge is not ranked in BW is enough to make it rank far worse than Said. I am looking forward for John to show the weighting he puts on all four rankings. I remembered that a few years ago, it was (BW/FT/Forbes/EIU) 25/25/25/25 and then changed to 30/30/30/10 last or two years ago. And the weight for this year is unknown.

  • Pedal

    majority of inseaad class are sponsored!

  • wi11iedigital

    This ranking does seem really crazy, especially compared to the US schools. There is just a lot more variability in the hard numbers, exchange rates, etc. The school that sticks out to me as being low is CEIBS–I get the impression that the Mandarin-speaking grads there are very desirable among Western firms trying to get their chunk of the Chinese consumer pie.

  • Whattt

    I would swap LBS with INSEAD because INSEAD does better than LBS in terms of recruiting, admissions, GMAT score, diversity, ROI etc.

  • euromba

    it’s quite interesting how a solid program like Cambridge Judge was excluded from the BW ranking, when their employment statistics boast of recruiters such as McKinsey, Amazon, and the usual bigwigs with 91% of the class employed within 3 months of graduation. Compare that to other higher ranked schools such as IE and Oxford makes you wonder how reliable these rankings are. The quality of the alumni, the organizations they are in, their positions in these companies are all top notch. Any thoughts P&Q community??

    I find it hard to believe that an SDA Bocconi, IE or Schulich is “better” than Judge (I’m York Schulich alumnus from undergrad).