13 November 2002
Aston climbs onto the Ivy League
ASTON Business School (ABS) is Europe's best in terms of how its faculty is rated by present and former students, according to one of the world's most influential guides.
In The Economist Intelligence Unit's* Which MBA,** ABS is the only European business school that made the top 25 for a world-rated faculty, with a score of 90%. This rates the Birmingham-based school alongside America's finest academies, including Yale, Harvard, Wharton and Stanford.
ABS also scored 90% for its programme content, again ahead of all its European competitors. This result is based on research in areas such as the content and structure of the programme, the teaching quality and its practical relevance.
ABS is also rated alongside the best American schools in terms of the facilities and back up it offers to its MBA students with a score of 88%; not even the Oxbridge business schools figure in this top 20.
This indicates that ABS is investing more money into things like research, technology, marketing, administration and careers services. It is particularly good news as it comes before ABS has spent �20 million on an extension to its HQ, a fact that will undoubtedly further improve its ranking in future editions of MBA league tables. Whether ABS is ever able to make an impression on America's Ivy League schools is questionable, given the hefty donations they receive from sponsors and wealthy alumni.
Professor John Saunders, head of ABS, was pleased though not totally surprised by the latest results: 'At the moment we're probably the fastest growing business school in the UK,' he said. 'But we're not just getting bigger, we're also getting better.
'These results vindicate ABS's approach to achieve excellence in all we do, building the best faculty and recruiting the best students,' he continued.
'Our aim is to build like no other while retaining an open, equitable culture. You could say we're building a model that allows participation: we recognise that people working together produce far better results than the sum of individuals' autonomous efforts.
'At ABS, nobody stops anyone else doing things - there is positive encouragement all around the school. We recruit the right people in the first place then allow them to get on with what they're good at. ABS is excelling because of its people,' he said.
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Notes for editors:
* The Economist Intelligence Unit is a specialist publisher serving companies establishing and managing operations across national borders. For over 50 years it has been a source of information on business developments, economic and political trends, government regulations and corporate practice worldwide.
The firm is a member of The Economist Group. For further information see its website: www.eiu.com
** Which MBA (14th edition), A critical guide to the world's best MBAs. George Bickerstaffe. Published by Pearson Education.
ISBN: 0 273 66311 9
• photos of Professor John Saunders are available as well as an artist's impression of the extension to ABS's headquarters
• Prof John Saunders is available for further comments if required
• to meet the demand for its courses ABS will continue to grow both physically and in terms of staffing. In the next five years the number of its full time academic staff will rise from the current 80 to over 120 and its turnover will increase from �15 million to around �25m