The Top 100 Business Schools, Ranked By Research

The Wharton School’s one-year excommunication from The Financial Times’ Global MBA ranking in 2023 had all kinds of consequences. The biggest beneficiary was Ivy rival Columbia Business School, which moved into the top overall spot — and which climbed into second place, behind Harvard Business School, in FT’s research ranking that year.

Alas for CBS, it was just a one-year blip. Wharton, widely regarded as one of the best research schools on the planet, returned to FT’s Global Ranking in 2024 and not only claimed the top overall spot away from Columbia, but also bumped Harvard out of the top research rank. Columbia sank to this overall and fourth in the list of best programs for business research, and Chicago Booth School of Business, which had been ranked No. 4 for research, moved to No. 2. Cornell Johnson Graduate School of Management, a surprise No. 3 in research last year (where it had vaulted from ninth the year before), sank to sixth, one place behind Texas-Dallas Jindal School of Management.

While the Jindal School has enjoyed success in the FT ranking, up from sixth last year and 10th two years ago, its deep investment in research is better advertised by its own pair of rankings for North American and Worldwide schools, which it publishes in tandem annually. And in both of those, once again this year, Wharton was the story — ranking No. 1 by a long, long way.

NO RESEARCH SLOUCHES HERE

Wharton’s research prowess is legendary in higher education. The University of Pennsylvania’s B-school is home to more than 20 research centers and initiatives, in every subject from analytics to public policy to social impact. Its scholarship generates new courses, programs, and partnerships between academics, industry, and government — all in the service of addressing pressing global business challenges.

But there are no research slouches in the FT or UT-Dallas rankings, especially not in the upper places. Harvard has 11 research centers and regional offices around the world; Columbia has six major academic divisions from Accounting to Management to Marketing under which research is conducted, categorized, and published. Chicago Booth has 13 centers and initiatives, including the Harry L. Davis Center for Leadership, the Rustandy Center for Social Sector Innovation, and the renowned Policy Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, which runs one of the premier startup accelerators in the world. Cornell Johnson, ranked No. 3 for research by FT last year and No. 6 this year, boasts industry-leading centers like the Parker Center for Investment Research and the Smith Family Business Initiative.

Overall in FT’s 2024 research ranking, all of the top six, eight of the top 10, and 16 of the top 20 research schools as ranked by The Financial Times are based in the United States. See the complete 100-school FT ranking on Page 4.

WHARTON PROFS PUBLISHED 392 ARTICLES FROM 2019 TO 2023

The FT ranking weighs the number of publications by a school’s current faculty in 50 academic and practitioner journals over a 30-month span; the twin rankings released annually by UT-Dallas are constructed differently, looking instead at a school’s number of publications in 24 journals in a five-year span. And once again, one school dominates in this measure: In the most recent span from 2019 to 2023 (last year’s ranking was for 2018 to 2022, the year before that was for 2017 to 2021, etc.), Wharton had an incredible 392 articles, down only slightly from 396 in the ranking released in 2023, which itself was up from 380 articles in 2022, 353 articles in 2021, and 323 in 2020.

The No. 2 school in both the North American and Worldwide rankings was UT-Dallas itself — just as it was last year — with 297 articles, up from 275. In third place in both rankings was Columbia Business School with 289 articles, followed by Harvard with 279, and Chicago Booth School of Business with 278 to round out the top 5.

TOP 8 SCHOOLS IN BOTH TEXAS-DALLAS RANKINGS ARE IN U.S.

UT-Dallas provides a tool to study research articles published in the leading business journals; that database contains author information on all research published since 1990. A single-authored article gets the author’s affiliated school a score of 1; the ranking addresses the issue of shared authorship by giving each school a score of p/n, where p is the number of authors from the same school and there are a total of n authors on the article.

If an author lists multiple schools, each of the schools that author is affiliated with gets a corresponding scaled score. For example, if one of the n authors lists m affiliations, each school that the author is affiliated with gets a score of 1/nm. In this way, Wharton achieved a score of 197.25, down from 204.86 in 2023 (when it was the only school to reach 200 points). For the 20 years that UT-Dallas makes available for examining on its website, Wharton has been tops in every one. UT-Dallas scored 142.70, followed by Columbia (136.18), Harvard (132.51), and Chicago Booth (127.16). (See pages 2 and 3 for the complete 100-school UT-Dallas rankings.)

The top eight schools in both rankings were U.S. B-schools, with the first deviation in the Worldwide ranking being INSEAD, of France, at No. 9 with 251 articles and 111.75 points. In 2023, the top 10 in both rankings were U.S. schools; INSEAD was 11th, up from 12th in 2022.

SDA BOCCONI PLUMMETS; CANADA ADDS 1 SCHOOL

Overall in the Worldwide ranking, the U.S. accounted for 67 places, up from 65 in 2023 and 66 in 2022. The United Kingdom had eight places, led by London Business School at No. 24 (up from 26th), while China also had eight, led by Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) at 28th — exactly where it ranked in 2023. Other notables included HEC Paris at 51st, down from 45th; and Italy’s SDA Bocconi School of Management at 76th, way down from 53rd.

In the North American ranking, the first non-U.S. B-school was the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management, which landed 16th with 226 articles and 93.86 points. (Rotman was 17th overall in the Worldwide ranking.) Canada’s premier B-school was 19th in 2023 and 22nd in 2022.

Canada had nine schools in the North American ranking this year, up from eight last year, but like last year all except for Toronto were ranked below 35th.

See pages 2 and 3 for the 100-school UT-Dallas North American and Worldwide rankings, and page 4 for the 100 top research schools as ranked by The Financial Times.

See FT’s Global MBA ranking here, and UT-Dallas’ research rankings here.

AND DON’T MISS LAST YEAR’S STORY ON THE TOP 100 B-SCHOOLS RANKED FOR RESEARCH and NEW RANKING CROWNS A TOP B-SCHOOL FOR FINANCE RESEARCH — AND THE WINNER MAY SURPRISE YOU

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