Universidades latinoamericanas pierden posiciones en ranking QS
Junio 18, 2024

Latin American universities lose more ground in rankings

Latin America’s higher education system continues to lag behind global peers, and has, on average, lost further ground in the past year, according to the QS World University Rankings 2025, and the gap between elite universities and the rest is growing in some countries.

The rankings, released on 4 June, see Universidad de Buenos Aires (University of Buenos Aires) named Latin America’s leading university, retaining the status it lost to Universidade de São Paulo in last year’s table. It places 71st worldwide, a jump of 24 places.

Universidad de Buenos Aires is one of 144 Latin American universities to feature in the rankings.

However, overall the results show that the continent’s higher education system continues to lag behind global peers, and has, on average, lost further ground over the past year: 51 Latin American universities (35.4%) have fallen, while only 19 (13.2%) have risen.

As in previous years, the primary challenge facing Latin America’s universities is cultivating competitive levels of research impact, according to QS.

The highest average score recorded by any Latin American nation for QS’ measure of research impact, Citations per Faculty, is Brazil – whose average score is 6.5/100. Across the continent, the average Citations per Faculty score is 2.41/100.

Latin American universities are most competitive in QS’ measure of graduate employability, Employment Outcomes. Here, the continental average is 25.39/100 – the highest average score achieved by Latin American universities in any of the indicators used by QS to compile the ranking.

Five Latin American universities rank among the global top 25 for Employment Outcomes. The continent’s most employable graduates are nurtured at Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, which ranks 12th globally for this indicator and is closely followed by Universidad de Buenos Aires (13th).

Overall performance

In the overall rankings, Brazil’s leading university, Universidade de São Paulo (University of São Paulo), ranks 92nd – a drop of seven places. Brazil has more ranked universities than any other Latin American nation (35). Of its 35 featured universities, the majority (24) have remained stable within their rank or band, seven have improved their position, but four have fallen in rank.

Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (UC) has broken into the global top 100 for the first time, rising from 103rd to a new high of 93rd. Universidad de Chile jumps from 159th to 139th.

But despite these positive results, the gap between Chile’s top two universities and their national peers is rising: they are the only two of Chile’s ten best universities to have improved their position year-on-year.

A similar trend has emerged in Colombia. Colombia’s two top universities, Universidad de Los Andes (179th) and Universidad Nacional de Colombia (219th) have both risen – but no other Colombian university has improved its rank this year.

None of Ecuador’s eleven ranked universities have improved their position year-on-year.

The national leader is Universidad San Francisco de Quito, which remains in the 801-850 band.

None of Peru’s ten ranked universities have improved their position year-on-year. The national leader is Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú (359th).

Rankings reflects ‘growing inequalities’

Ben Sowter, QS senior vice-president, said: “We continue to see growing inequities in Latin America, both at the national and regional level.”

He said the continent’s leading universities have recorded some positive progress over the last year, recording both improving employment outcomes and standing among the world’s academics.

“However, while this small collection of globally elite universities remains competitive, we observe, in multiple countries – Argentina, Chile, Colombia – that the national leaders have increased the gap between them and their domestic peers.

“While every nation benefits from having an internationally renowned flagship research university, the challenge for Latin America’s largest university systems will be identifying ways to ensure that peer institutions catch up, particularly in terms of research impact,” he noted.


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