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Impact Rankings 2024: Dalhousie ranks 65th globally for tackling some of the world's biggest issues

Posted by Matt Reeder on June 14, 2024 in Awards
Dalhousie ranked in the top 20 for its work in support of life below water, in the top 30 globally for zero hunger, and in the top 50 for life on land.
Dalhousie ranked in the top 20 for its work in support of life below water, in the top 30 globally for zero hunger, and in the top 50 for life on land.

Dalhousie scaled new heights in this year's Impact Rankings from Times Higher Education, placing 65th out of 1,963 universities for its work in helping tackle some of the world's biggest challenges.

That's an increase of 35 spots from last year and marks Dal's best placement yet in the annual global rankings that measure how well universities are doing in supporting the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The rankings offer an opportunity for universities around the world to provide input to showcase their work in up to 17 areas of sustainable development — each aligned with one of the UN's 17 different SDGs. For the second year in a row, Dalhousie participated in all categories. 

Indicators for each SDG focus on broad areas of research, stewardship, outreach, and teaching.

This year, Dalhousie placed 11th overall in Canada out of 24 participating universities and ranked among the top 10 universities in the country for five individual SDGs. It placed in the top 100 globally for six SDGs. 

Dal’s top-ranked SDGs for 2024 were:

  • Life Below Water (SDG 14): Ranked 14th globally, 2nd in Canada. 
  • Zero Hunger (SDG 2): Ranked 30th globally, 5th in Canada.
  • Life On Land (SDG 15): Ranked 44th globally, 6th in Canada.
  • Clean Water and Sanitation (SDG 6): Ranked 58th globally, 7th in Canada.
  • Good Health and Well-Being (SDG 3): Ranked 73rd globally, 3rd in Canada. 
  • Partnerships For the Goals (SDG 17): Ranked 89th globally, 12th in Canada.

"Dal is committed to advancing the UN SDGs," says Dal President and Vice-Chancellor Kim Brooks. "Rankings will always be less important than the great work we do here to make the world a better place. Nevertheless, our inclusion among top universities is a testament to our global impact and to the hard work of extraordinary colleagues."

Dal ranked in the 101-200 range in the following eight SDG categories: Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions (SDG 16); Responsible Consumption and Production (SDG 12); Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure (SDG 9); Sustainable Cities and Communities (SDG 11); Decent Work and Economic Growth (SDG8); Reduced Inequalities (SDG 10); Affordable and Clean Energy (SDG7); and No Poverty (SDG 1).

A rising score

Dal achieved an overall score of 90.8 out of a possible 100 in this year's ranking, up 2.5 points from last year. 

A university’s total score is calculated by combining its score in SDG 17 (Partnerships for the Goals) with its top three scores out of the remaining SDGs. For years 2023 and 2024, the score for the overall ranking is an average of the last two year’s total scores.

This score is used to position the university in the overall rankings.

Learn more: Impact Rankings methodology

Dalhousie's success reflects contributions from across the university's Faculties and administrative units. A dedicated Impact Rankings Group then incorporates this input as well as progress reflected on Dal's Impact on Global Goals website into its submission each year.

Areas of excellence

Dal's top score in an individual category this year was for Partnership for the Goals (SDG 17). It rose 5.7 points to 90.6/100 on this goal over last year for its work in helping forge strong international partnerships that support sustainable development across various sectors and strengthening the means of implementation of the SDGs.

Dal also improved its score for Good Health and Well-Being (SDG 3), where it rose 5.4 points to 82.7/100 for its efforts to build new collaborations and improve health services, researching health and well-being, and graduating students in the health professions.

Recommended reading — Bucking the national trend: More Dal med grads opting for careers in family medicine

Dal also gained 5.4 points to 81.7/100 on Zero Hunger (SDG 2) for its work in support of ending hunger, achieving food security and improved nutrition, and promoting sustainable agriculture.

Like last year, Dal also performed well on Life Below Water (SDG 14), placing second in Canada on this goal. It earned a score of 88.2/100 for efforts across the university in researching life below water, supporting aquatic ecosystems through action and education, maintaining a local ecosystem, and water-sensitive waste disposal.

Other areas of leadership for Dalhousie included Life on Land (SDG 15), where it achieved a score of 85.5/100, and Clean Water and Sanitation (SDG 6), where it received 77.5/100.

Learn more about Dalhousie's performance in the 2024 rankings (scroll down the page and click on the Impact Rankings tab). 

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