Ten Biggest Surprises In The Economist’s 2019 MBA Ranking

SDA Bocconi School of Management in Italy

SDA Bocconi School of Management in Italy

10) SDA Bocconi Hits The Spotlight

In The Financial Times, SDA Bocconi ranks 31st. Bloomberg Businessweek pegged them at 39 last year. Among programs outside the United States, Poets&Quants slots SDA Bocconi at 7th.  And The Economist? Here, SDA Bocconi lands at 13th – or the 3rd-best full-time MBA program outside the United States.

To put it another way, SDA Bocconi outranks such stalwarts as Columbia Business School, MIT Sloan, Virginia Darden, and (of course) INSEAD and LBS.

Think of SDA Bocconi as Europe’s answer to America’s USC Marshall, a program rocketing up the rankings thanks to hitting the fundamentals across the board. In The Economist’s four ranking categories, SDA Bocconi finishes between 11th (“Open New Career Opportunities”) and 22nd (“Potential To Network”) – a relative consistency that contrasts to the deep dips and sudden surges that define The Economist ranking. In fact, SDA Bocconi doesn’t even break into the Top 10 in any individual metric, though it does tumble into the Bottom 50 for placement (75th), Student Quality (67th), and Breadth of Alumni Network (71st).

Don’t expect this ranking to be a blip, however. SDA Bocconi is here to stay, particularly with world-class career services and faculty. In student surveys, the program earned respectable (and consistent) marks in Faculty Quality (4.45), Culture and Classmates (4.44), and Alumni Effectiveness (4.41). Even better, an SDA Bocconi MBA degree nets a major return. According to Economist data, students entering the program reported $51,442 in average pre-MBA pay. After graduation, that number spikes to $136,366, a 124.2% improvement!

No wonder SDA Bocconi has been slingshot into the conversation as one of Europe’s best MBA program. In 2015, SDA Bocconi ranked just 50th. Since then, it has risen from 38th to 28th to 24th to 13th. In just the past two years, the school’s career services ranking has leaped from 26th to 11th. More impressive, post-MBA pay has risen from 58th to 21st. In real numbers, that’s the difference between $94,494 and $136,366! At the same time, student survey scores have shown alumni effectiveness rank to have climbed from 49th to 26th.

According to the school, the Boston Consulting Group and Microsoft rank among the biggest consumers of MBA talent at SDA Bocconi. However, word is getting out about the school, as The Economist’s data shows the recruiter pool has grown increasingly diverse. Such momentum could translate to a Top 10 ranking for SDA Bocconi in the year ahead.

Questions about this article? Email us or leave a comment below.