For instance, ARWU is repeatedly criticised in France, where it triggers an annual controversy, focusing on its ill-adapted character to the French academic system Indeed, a further criticism has been that the metrics used are not independent of university size, e.g.
number of publications or award winners will mechanically add as universities are grouped, independently of research (or teaching) quality; thus a merger between two equally-ranked institutions will almost double the merged institutions score and give it a higher ranking, without any change in quality.
It is the totality of the university enterprise that is important, as the only place where that totality of ourselves and our world is brought together, and which makes it the strongest provider of the rational explanation and meaning that societies need.
In research, universities create new possibilities; in teaching, they shape new people.
A survey on higher education published by The Economist in 2005 commented ARWU as "the most widely used annual ranking of the world's research universities." Chancellor of University of Oxford, Chris Patten and former Vice-Chancellor of Australian National University, Ian Chubb, said: "the methodology looks fairly solid ... Vincke analyse how the ARWU works, using their insights as specialists of Multiple Criteria Decision Making (MCDM).
it looks like a pretty good stab at a fair comparison." and "The SJTU rankings were reported quickly and widely around the world... Their main conclusions are that the criteria used are not relevant; that the aggregation methodology has a number of major problems; and that insufficient attention has been paid to fundamental choices of criteria. C Liu and Y Cheng, think that the quality of universities cannot be precisely measured by mere numbers and any ranking must be controversial.Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits any use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author(s) and source are credited.Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU), also known as Shanghai Ranking, is one of the annual publications of world university rankings.The next highest number of top math schools is found in Germany, which has 29 entrants in the ranking, including Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn and Technische Universität Berlin (TU Berlin) in the top 50.France also performs well, with 20 representatives in the ranking, including Ecole Polytechnique Paris Tech at joint 22.Although none of Italy’s 15 entrants make the top 50, Politecnico di Milano, Sapienza – Università di Roma and Università di Bologna (UNIBO) are all within the top 100.Spain is home to 13 top math schools, including Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya in the top 100.The challenge to both is to permit autonomy without oppressive accountability, and to give staff and students the freedom to think, speculate and research.These are the very conditions of the personal and collective creativity that are the sources of a university’s deepest benefits to its society.ARWU is regarded as one of the three most influential and widely observed university rankings, alongside QS World University Rankings and Times Higher Education World University Rankings.ARWU is praised by several media and institutions for its methodology and influence.