The Financial Times today (Sept. 12) published its 2016 ranking of what it claims is the world’s best master’s in management programs, and for the first time a U.S. business school made the list. Out of 90 ranked programs, the sole U.S. program is Arizona State University’s W. P. Carey School of Business, which placed 82nd.
The new list is largely dominated by schools in the U.K. and France, accounting for 44% of the 90 programs. Carey is among nine business schools ranked for the first time, with ASU being the first U.S. school to cooperate with the British newspaper’s ranking.
The overall winner for the sixth consecutive time is Switzerland-based University of St. Gallen’s master’s in management. France’s HEC Paris and Essec Business School seized second and third finishes, respectively, for the third year in a row. Rounding out the top ten were No. 4 CEMS in France, No. 5 Rotterdam School of Management at Erasmus University in the Netherlands, No. 6 London Business School, No. 7 ESCP Europe, No. 8 WHU Beisheim, No. 9 the University of Bocconi in Italy, and No. 10 IE Business School in Spain.
12 YEARS FOR A U.S. SCHOOL TO MAKE THE RANKING
It took 12 full years for a U.S. school to break into the list. ASU’s 82nd-place finish puts it just below the MIM program at the University of Economics in Prague and right above the program at the School of Management at the University of Bath in England. Missing in action on the list are the programs at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business, and Michigan State’s Broad College of Business, among other U.S. players that presumably declined to participate in the ranking.
According to the FT, the average salary of a Carey graduate three years after commencement is $54,150 (adjusted for purchasing power parity). Some 57% of the latest graduating class were employed three months after getting their degrees. The school’s alumni survey put its “value for money” rank at 47th and its “careers rank” at 88th, with 78% of ASU’s graduates saying they achieved their aims with the program. The school reported that 43 students were enrolled in the 2015-2016 academic year.
The Financial Times ranking is based on two surveys: one for business schools and one for program alumni who graduated three years ago. Alumni responses inform six criteria, from “salary today” to “placement success,” plus ”international mobility,” that together account for 55% of the ranking’s weight. The school surveys — including questions on the diversity of the faculty and students — account for another 10 metrics and 45% of the ranking.
ROLLER-COASTER UPS AND DOWNS
According to the alumni surveys, the average salary of St. Gallen’s graduates rose by more than 13% to $102,000 three years after commencement, up from $90,000 last year. The FT said it is the third-highest overall behind the two Indian management academies at Ahmedabad and Bangalore, with respective salaries of $109,000 and $106,000 (though all salaries are adjusted for purchasing power parity).
St. Gallen also ranked first for alumni satisfaction, with alums reporting a 95% level of satisfaction, two points more than graduates of either London Business School or WHU Beisheim. The FT’s alumni survey also put St. Gallen first for international mobility, second for international experience, and third for job placement.
Roller-coaster-like ups and downs are a mainstay of this ranking. Stockholm’s School of Economics jumped 16 places in the new ranking to 28, the best year-over-year increase. But the year before, it had fallen 11 places. La Rochelle Business School plunged 12 spots to 60, even though it was last year’s most improved program in the ranking.