The University of Freiburg’s excellence in the areas of research and teaching is regularly reflected in various national and international university rankings. As one of the five best comprehensive universities and one of the ten best universities in Germany, the University of Freiburg is a member of the LERU (League of European Research Universities) and the German U15. In order to continue the success of the Excellence Initiative to date, the University is also applying for the federal government’s subsequent excellence strategy.
In the Thomson-Reuters Innovation Ranking 2019, the University of Freiburg ranks 30th among the 100 most innovative universities in Europe. In a national comparison, the university ranks 9th among the top ten. Freiburg’s trinational partners in the Eucor – The European Campus network have also maintained their position: Basel ranks 19th, the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) 53th and Strasbourg 60th among the 100 most innovative universities.
In the current World Universities Ranking of THE (Times Higher Education) 2023, the University of Freiburg ranks 113th worldwide and 10th nationally. The University of Freiburg stands out in particular in the “industry income” category, where it reached 96 out of a possible 100 points. The category evaluates achievements in technology transfer, for example through innovations, inventions and consulting.
The THE ranking is based on an education supplement of the British daily newspaper The Times and has been carried out worldwide since 2004. The ranking is based on 13 criteria.
The QS World University Ranking currently lists the University of Freiburg as the tenth best German university (sixth best comprehensive university, ranked 189th internationally, QS World University Rankings 2023). The British agency Quacquarelli Symonds conducted the THE ranking from 2004 to 2010 and has published its own ranking since 2010. It now includes more than 1,000 universities worldwide.
In a nationwide comparison with 38 other universities, the University of Freiburg takes third place in the overall ranking of the “QS World University Ranking: Sustainability 2023“.
The ranking “QS World University Ranking: Sustainability” evaluates universities worldwide with regard to their sustainability work in research, teaching and society in an overall ranking as well as according to two categories: the “Social Impact” and the “Environmental Impact”.
The University of Freiburg is particularly strong in the “Environmental Impact” category: in a national comparison, it ranks fourth. “Environmental Impact” measures the extent to which an institution incorporates environmental and sustainability aspects into its strategy, research and education. In the “Sustainable Education” metric, which accounts for 40 percent of the “Environmental Impact”, the University of Freiburg ranks third in Germany. “Sustainable Education” takes into account, for example, the academic reputation in the environmental sciences, the existence of research facilities with a sustainability focus, and the possibility of obtaining a university degree with a climate and environmental focus.
In addition, the University of Freiburg ranks second nationwide in the “Knowledge Exchange” metric from the “Social Impact” category. The ranking thus attests to the University of Freiburg’s great contribution to knowledge exchange and educational growth through strong partnerships in science and with business. The distinctive international research network of the University of Freiburg is also decisive for the evaluation.
In the overall ranking of the 700 universities considered worldwide, Freiburg is ranked between 221 and 240. The worldwide comparison also underscores the strength of the University of Freiburg in the “Knowledge Exchange” indicator: here it is ranked 73 out of 700.
The Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU), also known as the Shanghai Ranking, the University of Freiburg ranks fifth in a Germany-wide comparison. Worldwide, the ranking places it among the 101-150 best universities (the ranking does not allow a more precise breakdown). Since 2003, this ranking lists universities compared on the basis of six indicators. The ranking focuses on research.
The Centre for Higher Education, CHE for short, has published its ranking for master’s degree programs in 2022/23. The topic areas of engineering and psychology were recently updated. The University of Freiburg belongs to the top group in several assessment points in the fields of electrical engineering and information technology as well as psychology.
The ranking evaluates master’s programs across Germany based on quantitative indicators of research strength, and a student survey. The universities are divided into the top, middle or bottom group for each criterion.
In the field of electrical engineering and information technology, the University of Freiburg scores particularly well in the criteria “publications per scientist,” “research funds per scientist,” “citations per publication” and “doctorates per professor,” and is one of the top universities in Germany in these categories. In the field of psychology, the University of Freiburg is also in the top group in the categories “publications per scientist” and “doctorates per professor.”
The CHE ranking is based on a survey of master’s students in which respondents can evaluate up to eight criteria, depending on the subject, including the general study situation, the range of courses offered and the organization of studies. The CHE also collects research-based indicators such as “research funds per scientist” or “citations per publication”.
This year’s CHE rankings for master’s programs examined the following subjects: psychology and engineering sciences, which include electrical and information engineering, civil engineering, environmental engineering/construction, mechanical engineering, biotechnology, chemical engineering/applied chemistry, process engineering, materials engineering/material science and environmental engineering.
The University of Freiburg ranks ninth among German universities in terms of the acquisition of DFG third-party funding in the current German Research Foundation Funding Atlas (DFG). After adjustment by research field and size of institution, the University of Freiburg even ranks third on this indicator among all German universities. The DFG awarded a total of around 9.48 billion euros in research funding in the period 2017 to 2019. It is the largest provider of university research funding and is a self-governing body. DFG research grants are considered an expression of research excellence due to the predominantly research-driven and competitively organized approval procedures. As approval is contingent on regular positive peer evaluation, the grants are regarded as proof of particularly high competitiveness. In the 2019 fiscal year, DFG funding accounted for 42 percent of the total amount of third-party funding raised at the University of Freiburg (including the University Medical Center).
Overall Planning for Strategy and University Development
Dr. Christian Jehle
Phone: +49 761 203 9658