May 28, 2022

Thomson Reuters Releases 2015 Academic Reputation Survey Findings

The 2015 report was released earlier today and is titled, Exploring Scholarly Trends and Shifts Impacting the Academic Reputation of the World’s Leading Universities. The full text is linked below.

About the Report (via TR)

This robust analysis of survey results over a five-year period (2010-2014) identifies the key trends and shifts across the global research landscape that influence an institution’s academic standing.

Exploring Scholarly Trends and Shifts Impacting the Academic Reputation of the World’s Leading Universities is fueled by the unique and comprehensive results of Thomson Reuters Academic Reputation Surveys (2010-2014), including the insights of 65,000 academics and is representative of 6,500 universities and 105 areas of study.


The study also explores sharp regional differences and global perceptions that do not always align with an institution’s research output or strengths. For example, while responses differ within specific disciplines, participants have generally tended to identify a small number of well-recognized universities as the leaders across six major subject areas, including arts and humanities, medicine and health, life sciences, physical sciences, engineering and technology and social sciences. While the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) was not regarded as highly in medicine and health, as it was within other major disciplines, this area of study was still listed within its subject mix despite the institution not having a school of medicine. This is reflective of the interdisciplinary nature of science.

Some of the study’s key findings include:

  • Harvard University is the overall global leader-of-the-pack over the five-year period
  • New York University (NYU) and King’s College London experienced the greatest upswing in academic reputation
  • Multidisciplinary universities tend to have a stronger general reputation than specialty institutions, but a granular approach to a subject can lead to reputational excellence within that discipline
  • Regional perspectives often contrast with global perception
  • With some exceptions, the volume of a university’s research generally correlates with reputation, including papers co-authored with researchers in other regions

The report is organized into the following sections:

  • Most Improved Universities
  • Leading Universities By Subject Area
  • Regional Leaders In Academic Reputation

The report also includes four case studies:

  • Harvard University: A Detailed Breakdown by Subject Areas Case
  • Leading Universities in Business Studies
  • University of Sao Paulo: Regional Versus Global Perception and Research Output Versus Reputation
  • University of Melbourne: Reputation Versus Publication

Direct to Full Text Report (11 pages; PDF)

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.