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QS Meet MR. BRIC Jim O’Neill

On 11th March 2015, Dr. Christina Yan Zhang, China Director, QS Intelligence Unit met Jim O’Neill, ex Chairman Goldman Sachs Asset Management, father of the term “BRIC”. They enjoyed an interesting discussion on the QS BRICS University Ranking.
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About the Conference
This is the 3rd year of the annual China Business Conference, oragnised by the China-Britain Business Council. This year, it attracts 500 participants, most of leading business leaders who are working on the Chinese market. More than 40 topical speakers have been invited from McKinsey, Alibaba, Arup, UK and PRC Government, Oxford University, just to name a few. The event was supported by CBI, London & Partners, British Chambers of Commerce, Commercial Section of the Chinese Embassy, China Council for the Promotion of International Trade, The UK Chinese Business Association.
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Key topics cover:
Education, Innovation & Entrepreneurship
Healthcare
Liveable Cities
The Chinese Consumer
China Outbound
Visiting Britain – The Experiential Economy
Advanced Manufacturing

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Jim O’Neill on the Chinese Economy
Jim O’Neill is previously the chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management. He is one of the world’s most famous economists, who is best known for coining the term BRIC, which stands for Brazil, Russia, India, and China—the four rapidly developing countries that have come to symbolise the shift in global economic power away from the developed G7 economies.

Jim gave a keynote speech titled “Growth & China: Quality vs Quantity”. He seems to be very optimistic about the Chinese economy.

He argued that the slightly slowed Chinese economy is not a bad thing that might have concerned some. Instead, he argue that the Chinese economy currently stands at 7% GDP growth annually is mainly because “the Chinese government want its economy to slow down”. “The Chinese government is pursuing quality as opposed to quantity of growth”.

The Chinese economy has already slowed down in the past decade. However,”China’s economic growth hasn’t slowed as much as I predicted for the whole decade – yet.” And “China is the only BRIC not to disappoint”.

“Economically, at 7% growth, China creates another India every 2 years, another UK every 1 year, and another South Africa every 3 months”.

Talking about the role of the Chinese economy in the world, he pointed out that “the world economy in past 20 years has not slowed down that much than expected was directly a result of the strength of the Chinese economy”.

In conclusion, he proposes that he is very looking forward to 2016 when China would be hosting the G20 and he is keen to talk to policies makers in China to assist the sustainable development of its economy and hence the global economy.

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Jim O’Neill and QS BRICS University Ranking
It was not the first time Dr. Christina Yan Zhang, China Director of QS Intelligence Unit met Jim O’Neill. They met quite a few times before at various events. For example, 30th September 2014 Lecture with Gerard Lyons and Jim O’Neill, The New Economic and Political World Order: Challenges and Opportunities on 30th September 2014 at the 48 Group Club event.

Before his keynote speech at China-Britain Business Council China Business Conference, Jim O’Neill and Dr. Christina Yan Zhang had a discussion about the QS BRICS University Ranking.

Jim O’Neill was surprised that it was the Russian, rather than the Chinese government who sponsored the BRICS Universities Ranking! Obviously, Mr. BRICs believed that China was the one that performed best among the BRICS countries and ideally, they would be the one to sponsor a regional rankings like this.

Jim O’Neill was very pleased to read the QS BRICS University Rankings and happily took a photo holding the ranking supplyment with Dr. Christina Yan Zhang.
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(On 30th September 2014, Dr. Christina Yan Zhang, China Director, QS Intelligence Unit met Jim O’Neill at a 48 Group Club event with Gerard Lyons spoke on The New Economic and Political World Order: Challenges and Opportunities)

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QS University Rankings: BRICS to be launched in Beijing

The annual QS BRICS Conference will take place on the 18th of June in China, in Beijing. The 2014 QS University Rankings: BRICS will be launched during the opening session of the event. To register click here.  Join higher education leaders from Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa to discuss institutional development, internationalization, student and academic mobility, academic recruitment and research collaboration.  Read more

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Piecing together the national picture of Brazil

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Latin America, and Brazil particularly, is listed among the key actions of most institutional strategic plans. To the external observer, the landscape of Brazilian higher education is a territory unknown and uncharted. Save for the major cities of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, European institutions seeking to establish equitable research partnerships seldom venture into the Brazilian states: bridge building and scenario planning with Brazilian universities defines a new frontier of possibilities, the reality of which is partly enshrouded in the unknown. In 2010 for example, the Ministry of Education (MEC) data showed Brazil to have 2.377 higher education institutions. Out of these, 2.100 institutions were listed as fee-paying universities scattered throughout Brazilian territories, seemingly floating autonomously within the waters of regional municipalities. Brazilian institutions are growing, fast, at times under the radar and while planning for the 2014 World Cup has been weighed by woes of national inflation, a deflated national currency and volatile price parities, the Ministries of health, education and culture (and the state-run Petrobras) have continued to invest in research and development at the regional level. From 2003-2012 Brazil invested 8.4 billion R$ in the federal university system.
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No better time to look at BRICS universities

Since Jim O’Neill, former chief economist at Goldman Sachs, coined the acronym “BRIC” in 2001 to describe four of the world’s fastest growing economies (namely Brazil, Russia, India and China), the BRIC countries have been under scrutiny, and has even been the subject of a forum organised by Columbia University, which they labelled BRICLAB. BRIC added an S in 2010 when South Africa joined the group. These five countries, making up more than 40% of the world’s total population, have reached a point where their further economic development is strongly correlated with the way they build quality higher education systems.

In fact, earlier this year, a comparative study of the BRICS higher education systems by Stanford scholars was published. University Expansion in a Changing Global Economy: Triumph of the BRICs? takes a close look at how the massive higher education expansion in Brazil, Russia, India and China is having a significant impact on the world supply of university graduates – particularly engineers and computer scientists. This expansion may also shift, at least partially, the locus of future development in the global knowledge economy towards the BRICS countries.

Perhaps a sign of the important role the BRICS are increasingly playing in matters of education, Ministers of Education from the five BRICS countries agreed to join forces with UNESCO to support education progress globally through coordinated actions and advocacy during a landmark consultation organized on the margins of the 37th Session of UNESCO’s General Conference in Paris this past November. UNESCO’s Director-General said at the opening of the consultation:
“Your countries have enormous potential individually to influence global education trends – this power is multiplied through collective action, through the experience you can share, through your growing roles as development partners, and through the new approaches you are developing for international cooperation.”

This is why there is perhaps no better time to look at the BRICS countries from a university rankings perspective. QS has been publishing a global university ranking – QS World University Rankings since 2004, and two regional rankings – QS Asian University Rankings since 2009 and QS Latin America Rankings since 2011. In December 2013, QS, in conjunction with the Russian news agency Interfax, will launch its first BRICS University Rankings. The BRICS will undoubtedly play a crucial role in tomorrow’s higher education landscape; however, they will also have to tackle massive challenges, such as quality education for all as only a minority of students go to the elite institutions that are considered world-class.

Find out the results of the first BRICS University Rankings on 17th December 2013 on topuniversities.com. In the meantime, please find more information on this post or on iu.qs.com/brics/ to register for the QS BRICS University Forum in Moscow on 17-18th December.

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First ranking of BRICS countries- out 17th December

QS is to publish the first bespoke ranking for universities in the so-called BRICS countries next month.

Like its other regional rankings, the one for Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa will have measures and weightings designed specifically for the group of countries concerned, rather than simply representing an edited version of previously published results.

In order to make valid comparisons between more universities than have precise positions in the QS World University rankings, and to reflect common priorities in the five countries, the new ranking will contain eight measures. They will include the proportion of staff with a PhD and the number of papers published per faculty member.

QS has worked with Interfax, the Russian news agency, to produce the new ranking. Interfax was commissioned by Russia’s Ministry of Education and Science, earlier this year and chose QS to compile the ranking because of its experience with regional and subject comparisons. The ministry has ceded control of the design of the ranking and any editorial content. The results of the pilot study will be presented at a conference in Moscow on December 17.

The ranking has also been discussed with India’s Minister for Human Resources and Development, Dr ShashiTharoor, and the Education Secretary, Ashok Thakur. Both are encouraging Indian institutions to participate in and submit data to international rankings to see if such comparisons can help them.

Dr Juliana Bertazzo, Higher Education Policy Adviser and coordinator of the Brazilian project ‘Science without Borders’, as well as Dr Renato Prado Guimarães, Secretary General at the University of Sao Paulo, Brazil, were also supportive of the new project, which will highlight the strengths of the universities of these emerging markets.

More than 400 universities across the five countries have been assessed for the new ranking. Only the top 100 will appear in the initial publication.

The methodology will be similar to those used for QS’s regional rankings for Asia and Latin America. Academic reputation will be the most heavily-weighted indicator, but at less than the 40 per cent weighting it receives in the QS World University Rankings.

Ben Sowter, who is responsible for the exercise as head of the QS Intelligence Unit, said the results would be valuable because the five nations had comparable characteristics that led to the development of the “BRICS” term in the first place. The company did not intend to include other emerging nations with few similarities simply because it had the capability to do so.

Jim O’Neill, who coined the term as chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, said this month that the group remained a valid point of comparison, although Indonesia could have been included. Between them, they already represented a bigger market than the United States and would play important roles in the future, he said in a speech in London.

QS is to work with the Indian Centre for Assessment & Accreditation (ICAA), a private accreditation body, on a separate evaluation of Indian universities to be published next year. Dr Arun Nigavekar, the ICAA’s founder and a former chairman of the University Grants Commission, said the aim for Indian exercise was to create a system that was “globally accepted, yet locally grounded”.

QS and Interfax Group to launch first BRICS university ranking

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QS has been appointed by Interfax Group, a leading information provider in Russia and emerging “Eurasian” nations, to produce the world’s first university ranking of the “BRICS” countries.

The “QS University Rankings: BRICS”, as the ranking will be named, has received support from ministries of education and higher education institutions around the world. As one of the most trusted independent university ranking organisations, experienced in both global and regional rankings, QS was Interfax Group’s natural choice of partner for the project.

The new ranking was fostered by Russia’s ministry of education; following Russian president Vladimir Putin’s announcement (May 2012) to have at least five of the country’s universities in the top 100 in global university rankings by 2020.

Interfax Group was chosen out of five bidders to launch two new pilot rankings. The first will include only universities from the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS),the second ranking is a “BRICS” nation ranking, which will include the universities of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa; this will be a joint project between QS and Interfax Group.

Zoya Zaitseva, project director for QS University Rankings: BRICS says: “The BRICS nations are investing heavily in higher education, research and development as they recognize that creating knowledge and nurturing talents is essential to fuel the growth of their rapidly-expanding economies. The new ranking will increase their visibility and allow these universities to become more recognized on a global level.”

Dr. Mrs. Indu Shahani, Member  of the University Grants Commission, India and visiting faculty member at the UC Berkeley and NYU Stern says: “I’m delighted to be associated with the pilot of the QS University Rankings: BRICS. There is a strong belief among academics that this will create a new benchmark for young students as well as help raise the profile and global visibility of good Indian universities.”

She adds: “BRICS nations are accustomed to research studies on economic and political areas but this kind of educational research initiative based is a first and should be well received by Indian universities.”

Results of the first QS University Rankings: BRICS will be announced at the Interfax and QS BRICS University Forum in Moscow on 17th December 2013 and published on TopUniversities.com on the same day.

Primary motivations for pursuing an MBA among applicants from emerging economies

The recently published QS TopMBA.com Applicant Survey 2013 provides a detailed insight into the attitudes, goals and ambitions of MBA applicants.  The global motivations for pursing an MBA program vary depending on the age, gender, economic status and the current years of work experience.

The main motivations for pursuing an MBA as listed by potential MBA applicants are improving career prospects, learning new skills and taking up a leadership/management position.
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