The University of Hong Kong has dropped out of Asia’s top three in the latest Times Higher Education (THE) world university rankings. In the 2015-2016 THE report, HKU’s overall ranking fell from No. 43 last year to No. 44, squeezed out of the top three in Asia by Peking University for the first time since the rankings started in 2010.

Asia’s three best universities are now the National University of Singapore, China’s Peking University and the University of Tokyo.

University of Hong Kong HKU
University of Hong Kong. Photo: Wikimedia.

Among five indicators, scores for “teaching” and “international outlook” at HKU saw the biggest drops compared with last year. Meanwhile, scores for “citations”, “industry income” and “research” improved slightly.

HKU’s overall ranking in the world has slumped from No. 21 in 2010 to No. 44 this year.

Other Hong Kong higher education institutions also fell on this year’s list. The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology fell from No. 51 to No. 59. The Chinese University of Hong Kong fell from No. 129 to No. 138.

The THE world university ranking is one of the most reputable higher education rankings in the world. This year’s rankings covered 800 universities worldwide. The California Institute of Technology remained the best university in the world for the fifth consecutive year. The top ten continued to be dominated by US and UK schools, with the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich being the only exception.

Vivienne Zeng is a journalist from China with three years' experience covering Hong Kong and mainland affairs. She has an MA in journalism from the University of Hong Kong. Her work has been featured on outlets such as Al Jazeera+ and MSNBC.