London, Oct 8(ANI): Though UK and US universities have been where students have preferred to study over the past few years, Asian universities are posing a tough challenge with academia advancing in the region.
In the QS/Times Higher Education rankings, released on Thursday, the UK still comes second only to the US, but the number of Asian universities in the top 100 has increased from 14 to 16. The highest ranked Asian university is the University of Tokyo at 22, while the University of Hong Kong is placed at 24.
Cambridge was rated as the second best university in the world, while Oxford was at a joint fifth place with Imperial College, London.
"The broad message of these tables is clear - the leading UK research universities are held in high esteem internationally, but countries like China and Korea, which are investing massively in their best institutions, are snapping at our heels," said Wendy Piatt, Director General of the Russell Group of Universities.
"The precise accuracy of league tables like this can be debated, but there is no mistaking the alarm bell warning that our success is at risk if we as a nation don't take action to fight off such fierce competition," she added.
Several university insiders also said that institutions in Japan, South Korea and Hong Kong were potential threat to western institutions and argued that they needed more funding to compete on the global stage.
The rankings are based on an international survey of 9,000 academics, how influential the institution's research is and measures of teaching quality and ability to recruit staff and students abroad. (ANI)