Overall, Karolinska institutet (KI), followed by Handelshögskolan in Stockholm and the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet – SLU) are at the top of the 2009 list from the independent academic group Urank.
For the last seven years, KI has also topped another ranking by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Southern Sweden (Sydsvenska industri- och handelskammaren).
Urank bases their assessment on official statistics and evaluates factors such as teacher competence, ratio of instructors to students and research and library facilities.
A new section of the 2009 ranking compared three different academic areas, which produced somewhat different results than the overall list.
Within health and medicine, the University of Lund comes out above University of Gothenburg and KI. Lund also fares best in the area of technology and natural sciences, followed by the University of Uppsala and Chalmers in Gothenburg.
Within humanities and social sciences, Handelshögskolan in Stockholm comes out on top, followed by Uppsala and Lund.
More and more importance is being attached to such rankings. A few weeks ago, the Swedish government put forth a proposal for an independent group to assess the various education programmes offered by Swedish higher education institutions and divide tax payments accordingly.