The Methodology Behind P&Q’s Top MBA Programs For Entrepreneurship In 2022

How do you measure the impact and value of an MBA program? There’s no perfect way, to be sure. But we’ve spent the past few years thinking about it and taking feedback from business schools to create what we believe is the best methodology for an entrepreneurship-focused ranking on the market.

For three years now, we’ve been ranking full-time MBA programs for entrepreneurship. This year saw our biggest methodological changes.

Each year we make our survey and methodology available to schools in a Google document and ask them to provide feedback. We then consider all comments and suggestions provided and make changes based on what we believe will improve the value of the ranking to our readers and business schools. This year we included 16 data points, up from ten last year. However, to minimize major shifts in the outcome of the ranking, we gave new data points a 2.5% weight.

A MORE WELL-ROUNDED AND IMPROVED METHODOLOGY

The changes provide an even more well-rounded methodology and ranking that measures many parts of the entrepreneurial experience. Like last year, the two heaviest weighted categories are the average percentage of MBAs launching businesses during B-school or immediately after and the percentage of MBA elective courses that are 100% focused on entrepreneurship and/or innovation.

Some of the other higher-weighted categories include data looking at number of members of the school’s main entrepreneurship club, incubator or accelerator space available to MBAs, entrepreneurs in residence available to MBAs, and startup award money available to MBAs. This year we added data points into the methodology like the percentage of MBAs joining early-stage startups in their first jobs after B-school, the percentage of MBA faculty actively involved in a startup outside of the school, and the number of mentors available to MBAs.

We use ratios and percentages for all metrics used in the methodology. We do this to get a sense of what resources are like for individual students.

38 SCHOOLS RANKED THIS YEAR

This year, 38 schools in total were ranked. That’s down from 50 last year, but of the 50 ranked schools last year, 28 willingly submitted surveys. This year that number climbed to 29. The remaining nine schools were included based on publicly available data we gathered and averages of data collected from other schools.

This year’s methodology:

  • Average percentage of MBA students launching businesses within three months of graduation between 2017 and 2020 (15%)
  • Percentage of MBA elective courses with 100% of the curriculum focused on entrepreneurship or innovation (15%)
  • Percentage of MBA students in the B-school’s main student-run entrepreneurship club in academic year 2020-2021 (10%)
  • Ratio of square feet of incubator or accelerator space available to MBA students to MBA students in academic year 2020-2021 (10%)
  • Ratio of entrepreneurs in residence to MBA students during academic year 2020-2021 (10%)
  • Ratio of startup award money available to MBA students during academic year 2020-2021 (10%)
  • Average percentage of MBA students accepting a position in venture capital or private equity within three months of graduation between 2017 and 2020 (5%)
  • Percentage of full-time MBA faculty teaching an entrepreneurship or innovation course during academic year 2020-2021 (5%)
  • Average percentage of students joining (accepting a job at) a startup within three months of graduating between 2017 and 2020 (2.5%)
  • Percentage of MBAs taking an elective in entrepreneurship and/or innovation in academic year 2020-2021 (2.5%)
  • Percentage of core MBA courses with at least 50% of the curriculum focused on entrepreneurship or innovation during academic year 2020-2021 (2.5%)
  • Percentage of MBA students involved in a startup or startup project during academic year 2020-2021 (2.5%)
  • Ratio of entrepreneurship-focused mentor hours to MBA students during academic year 2020-2021 (2.5%)
  • Ratio of entrepreneurship-focused mentors available to MBA students to MBA students during academic year 2020-2021 (2.5%)
  • Percentage of MBA faculty involved with a startup or startup project in academic year 2020-2021 (2.5%)
  • Ratio of startup and/or entrepreneurship funding available to MBA students in academic year 2020-2021 (2.5%)

Last year’s methodology:

  • Percentage of MBA students launching businesses within three months of graduation between 2017 and 2019 (20%)
  • Percentage of MBA elective courses with 100% of the curriculum focused on entrepreneurship or innovation (20%)
  • The ratio of MBA students to accelerator space available to MBA students (10%)
  • The ratio of MBA students to entrepreneurs-in-residence available to MBA students (10%)
  • Total startup award money available to MBAs (10%)
  • Percentage of MBA students in the school’s main student-run entrepreneurship club (10%)
  • Percentage of full-time MBA faculty teaching an entrepreneurship or innovation course (5%)
  • Percentage of MBA students taking venture capital or private equity roles within three months of graduation between 2017 and 2019 (5%)
  • Percentage of core MBA courses with at least 50% of the curriculum focused on entrepreneurship or innovation (5%)
  • Percentage of MBA student-run clubs focused on entrepreneurship or innovation (5%)

FULL TRANSPARENCY: ALL DATA AND METHODOLOGY IS AVAILABLE

Other publications with entrepreneurship rankings focusing on business schools include U.S. News, The Princeton Review, and The Financial TimesAll have their flaws. The U.S. News ranking, similar to their undergraduate business school rankings, is not much more than a popularity contest. Deans and senior faculty are asked to rate programs on a one-to-five scale. The Princeton Review uses a convoluted and bogged-down methodology that considers raw numbers instead of accounting for program size, which greatly favors larger schools with more graduates. And The Financial Times isn’t much more than an extension of the alumni survey FT uses for its actual MBA rankings.

To be sure, no ranking is perfect. And the full methodology and data used to compile the rankings should be considered by readers. That’s why, along with the ranking and reporting that goes with it, we also publish our exact methodology and all data collected to calculate the rankings. So poke through the articles and data and learn about all 38 of these fantastic programs doing innovative work in the area of entrepreneurship education.

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