10 Biggest Takeaways In The Financial Times 2019 MBA Ranking

China Europe International Business School, based in Shanghai, achieved its highest FT rank ever this year, placing fifth in the world

8. The Rise Of The Asian Business School

For the first time ever in 21 years worth of rankings, a Chinese business school’s MBA program finished in the top five in the world. The China Europe International Business School, known widely as CEIBS, notched the fifth spot in the 2019 Financial Times global MBA ranking, just behind Stanford, Harvard, INSEAD, and Wharton. That’s pretty elite company for a Shanghai-based school that did not exist until 1994 and whose MBA program didn’t even make the FT’s first three rankings.

But that’s not the end of the rise of the Asian business schools in this year’s survey. China now has three schools in the top 22 this year and five in the top 35 ranked MBA programs, better than Britain’s three in the top 35. But the biggest gain is still CEIBS climb into a fifth-place finish. Of course, it’s only fair to put an asterisk of sorts on these rankings. They benefit greatly from the FT‘s practice of adjusting measured compensation by purchasing parity which tends to benefit schools where poverty is high and overall salaries are low. Not surprisingly given this adjustment, eight of the 10 biggest pay gains according to the Financial Times came in Asia, including two in Singapore and five in China. Also, 10 of the 11 lowest pay increases came in Europe.

It’s worth noting that CEIBS, a school established under an agreement between the Chinese government and the European Commission, was the first in mainland China to offer a full-time MBA program. Since making its debut on the Financial Times list in 2002 at a rank of 92nd, it has made considerable progress in the rankings game. CEIBS’ MBA cracked the top ten in 2009 by placing eighth, then slid the following year to 22nd and 24th in 2012. Ever since, it has been gaining ground, moving from 17th in 2016, to 11th in 2017, to eighth last year and finally fifth place in 2019.