Financial Times’ 2024 Exec Ed Rankings: Elite U.S. Programs Missing From ‘Global’ Lists

Financial Times' 2024 Exec Ed Rankings: U.S. Schools Missing From So-Called 'Global' Lists

In executive education, Harvard Business School is the undisputed 800-pound gorilla in the market. Last year, more than 12,700 executives and their employers paid the school $224 million for exec ed training.

Tuition revenue jumped 29% over the previous year, just shy of the school’s pre-pandemic high, set five years ago. Students in HBS exec ed courses increased 20%, while its on-campus residential programs grew by 14%.

No other business school in the world can make such bold claims for its executive education courses. But if you consult the new 2024 Financial Times rankings on the best executive education programs, the U.S. gorilla is missing in action. So are other Kings of Beasts who inhabit the exec ed jungle.

See Poets&Quants’ story on FT’s 2023 exec ed ranking.


Nowhere to be found on the 2024 FT lists of the top open enrollment and custom enrollment programs are The Wharton School or Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, two of the biggest exec ed players in the U.S. Also absent are MIT Sloan, Columbia Business School, and Stanford Graduate School of Business.

Their absence — because they refuse to cooperate with the FT’s rankings — makes the exercise of pretending to put out a so-called “global” list of the best exec ed schools something of a pointless exercise.

In the Euro-centric open-enrollment ranking, Europe’s largest exec ed players — INSEAD and IMD — surprisingly fail to make the Top 5 of the British newspaper’s ranking of the top open enrollment programs. INSEAD, with exec ed revenues of $158 million in 2023, ranks eighth, while IMD (International Institute for Management Development)in Lausanne, Switzerland, which racked up $162 million in exec ed revenue in 2023, ranks ninth.

INSEAD and IMD do better in the FT’s ranking of custom exec ed programs, placing first and third, respectively.


So who rules the roost in open enrollment exec ed? HEC Paris tops the list, with three schools tied for second-place: IESE Business School, Esade Business School, and London Business School. Rounding out the top five are Fundacao Dom Cabral in Brazil and Edhec Business School in France, both sharing fifth place.

The highest ranked U.S. school on the open enrollment ranking is the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business, placing 12th, one of only four U.S. schools participating in the ranking with Florida Atlantic University (ranked 31st), University of Utah (38th), and Rutgers Business School (56th).

On the custom ranking, Duke Corporate Education ranks fourth, one of only eight U.S. schools on list ranking 90 institutions. The Thunderbird School of Global Management in Arizona placed 17th; the University of Tennessee Haslam College of Business ranked 24th; followed by Miami Herbert (27); Rutgers (44); Emory Goizueta (62); Utah Eccles (64); and Georgetown McDonough (65).

See the next pages for the complete FT ranking of open enrollment (page 2) and custom enrollment (page 3) executive education programs.

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