SDG Impact Rankings for Universities - 2021

Thursday, April 22, 2021

The Times Higher Education Impact Rankings for 2021 were released this week, ranking universities from around the world on their contributions towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Queen’s University is the top ranking Canadian institution this year (5th), with the University of British Columbia (13th) and McMaster University (14th) also ranking among the best. Seven Canadian universities are included in the top 50 best performing global institutions (see full list of Canadian universities in the top 100 below).

Picture of Queen's University at Kingston, Ontario

Queen's University, located in Kingston, Ontario is the highest-ranking Canadian institution in The Times Higher Education Impact Rankings, ranking 5th globally. Image Credit: Wikimedia

This year’s edition of the Impact Rankings continues to highlight the growing contributions by universities towards advancing the SDGs. From research and teaching, to student leadership and operations, universities are powerful drivers of the transformations needed to address the big sustainability questions and challenges facing our world. With no country in the world on track to achieve the SDGs by 2030, universities can and must play a leading role to accelerate global SDG progress.

See how Canadian universities are already demonstrating leadership for the SDGs

Canadian Universities in the Top 100 for Overall Ranking

  • Queen’s University - 5th
  • University of British Columbia - 13th
  • McMaster University - 14th
  • University of Toronto - 34th
  • University of Montreal - tied 39th
  • University of Calgary - tied 43rd
  • Simon Fraser University - tied 46th
  • Western University - 52nd
  • Concordia University - 62nd
  • University of Alberta - tied 64th
  • York University - 67th
  • Université Laval - tied 70th
  • University of Saskatchewan - tied 96th
  • Lakehead University - tied 99th
  • University of Waterloo - tied 99th

Canadian Universities' Top 10 Rankings in the Times Higher Education Impact Rankings for 2021 for each SDG

The 2021 Impact Rankings is the third edition and the overall ranking includes 1,115 universities from 94 countries/regions.

The Impact Rankings are based on a series of more than 100 metrics and over 200 measurements capturing contribution towards each of the 17 SDGs. Participation is on an opt-in basis for institutions wanting to be included, with a significant self-reporting component for data collection. The measurement system focuses on university performance across four broad areas: research, stewardship, outreach and teaching. To learn more, view the Impact Rankings 2021 methodology.

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