Only 3 Thai varsities in top 100

Main auditorium of Chulalongkorn University.

This year only three Thai higher-education institutes have made it to the list of top 100 universities in emerging economies, down from five last year.

Those still on the prestigious list are King Mongkut's University of Technology Thonburi (KMUTT), Mahidol University (MU) and Chulalongkorn University (CU), who are ranked 49, 63, and 90 respectively.

Though these universities are still doing well enough to be ranked in the top 100, their rankings have slipped from 29, 52 and 85 respectively last year.

The Times Higher Education magazine will release its annual BRICS [Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa] and Emerging Economies Rankings 2015 today. The list covers 22 countries, including Thailand, Taiwan and Malaysia.

The latest list has seen Chiang Mai University and Prince of Songkla University, which were ranked 82nd and 89th respectively last year, drop out of the top 100.

Phil Baty, editor of the Times Higher Education Rankings, described the latest results as an "alarming sign" for Thailand.

"These important rankings should raise the alarm in Thailand - it has lost two universities from the top-100 list and its three remaining institutions have all slipped down the rankings," he pointed out.

He said strong, globally competitive universities were necessary for Thailand's future economic success.

"It is important [for Thailand] to ensure that its leading institutions are given the funding and freedom that they need to compete globally," Baty said.

Rising China

Several Chinese universities dominated this year's list.

China has dramatically strengthened its position as No 1 in emerging economies, matching its growing economic dominance with |rapidly improving educational institutions that are increasingly able to challenge long-established universities in the West.

Peking University and Tsinghua University hold the top two spots this year, with another 25 Chinese universities holding other rankings in the top-100 list. This number is up from a total of 23 Chinese universities last year.

Only 17 of the 22 emerging economies considered managed to have their universities listed in the rankings. For instance, Indonesia and the Philippines did not make the list this year, while only one Malaysian university made it.

The full list is available on

The Times Higher Education BRICS and Emerging Economies Rankings are the latest addition to a portfolio that has established Times Higher Education as the world's most respected provider of comparative university performance data.