A step up for the Scuola Normale Superiore of Pisa and Florence in the Times Higher Education's World University Ranking: from the 183th place last year to 168th this year, despite the sizeable increase in the number of universities assessed - 1904, up from 1799. The Normale is confirmed as the second best Italian university, after Bologna, of 56 ranked.

PISA, 27 September 2023. The Scuola Normale Superiore is confirmed as being among the first 200 universities worldwide and among the top places in Italy: second, as in 2022. The data refer to the academic year 2020/2021 and are from the World University Rankings 2024, one of the most accredited international rankings, curated by THE (Times Higher Education), an independent British journal specialising in the ranking and comparison of international university systems. The Scuola Normale Superiore, sited in Pisa (Faculty of Sciences and Faculty of Humanities) and in Florence (Faculty of Political and Social Sciences) thus falls within in the top 10 per cent worldwide.

In particular, the Scuola Normale passes from 183th place worldwide last year (referring to the performance of the academic year 2019/2020) to the 168th place in this year's edition, with a jump of 15 places, even more significant since the number of competitors has increased: the number of universities assessed by Times Higher Education has risen from 1799 to 1904: a further 105 universities. In Italy, the Normale is confirmed as being in second place of the 56 universities ranked, after the University of Bologna: with the Sapienza of Rome, these are the only three Italian universities in the top 200. The top three worldwide are the universities of Oxford, Stanford and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

The ranking is meant as a “guide” for students enrolling in university courses in the next few years and for their families, which is why it is defined as the World University Rankings 2024.  The parameters that contributed to the success of the Scuola Normale include that of Teaching, in which it occupies the 72nd place worldwide. Other parameters scoring optimal global placings are research environment (which assesses aspects such as the research environment and academic reputation), the quality of the research (including, for example, the number of citations in scientific journals), and the internationalisation of students and academic staff.

Taking into consideration the sizeable increase in the number of institutions ranked worldwide, the Scuola Normale thus confirms its competitivity. “With the progressive and continual diffusion of these rankings, the context of reference at world level is becoming increasingly competitive each year”, remarks the Normale's Director, Professor Luigi Ambrosio. “Albeit in the physiological fluctuation of the results attained, to stay in the first 200 places and consequently in the top 10 % would appear to be a positive result. Not being present in all the disciplines is without doubt a penalising factor, and we are aware that we have much room for growth regarding specific indicators, such as that of industry. The important thing is the confirmation that we are among the first three institutions of higher education in Italy and for us to continue to serve as a point of reference for the university system of our country”.