President's Blog

A world-class university = a world-class faculty

Congratulations to our faculty for Mason being recognized once again by the Academic Ranking of World Universities as one of the top 200 research universities in the world and one of the top 100 in the U.S. This is a terrific distinction for any university, let alone a young one like ours, barely in its 40s!

To put this ranking in perspective, only three other universities in our state — the University of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth, and Virginia Tech — and two in Greater Washington — the University of Maryland-College Park and George Washington University — cracked the top 300.

I use these references not to infer that we are superior to any other universities. We are blessed to be surrounded by great and diverse universities in our region and our state. Rankings look at quality through different, narrow and not fully reliable lenses. In some we fare better than in others.

The Academic Ranking of World Universities specifically considers scholarship and its impact, namely major scientific awards, articles in prestigious journals, and citations of our publications. In other words, they measure how influential our research is. Mason does exceptionally well in the social sciences, where we rank 46th in the world and 36th in the U.S., and more specifically in economics, where we also rank in the top 50.

Our high marks in this ranking are driven by our faculty, the quality of their scholarship and its impact. It is tremendously gratifying to see their hard work recognized on a global scale.  Ultimately, the beneficiaries of this work are our students, who get to learn from and engage with the very thought leaders who are pushing the boundaries of their respective disciplines.

Congratulations to all!