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Sep 17, 2014 05:14 AM EDT

MIT Grabs Top Spot in QS World University Rankings

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Massachusetts Institute of Technology has topped the list of QS world university rankings. The private research University has been performing consistently in the rankings by featuring in the top 10, the last eight times.

The rankings - based on research, teaching, employability and internationalization - include six American and four British Universities.

"In the wake of the recession, both governments and private sector FUNDING sources are placing greater emphasis on high-impact STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) research, much of which takes place in specialist institutions," QS head of research Ben Sowter said in a statement, CNBC reports.

"Tech-focused institutions are increasingly the focal point of a global race for innovation. With budgets from public sources increasingly coming under strain, institutions seem more focused than ever on potentially lucrative research in science, technology and medicine."

The second position is being occupied by two British Universities - University of Cambridge and London's Imperial College.

A Cambridge University spokesperson said that the rankings prove that the school is indeed one of the most respected and influential higher education institutions in the world.

The Imperial College gave an enhanced performance in this year's rankings - jumping from fifth to second place in the list. The better scorecard is credited to the published research in world-cited academic journals, college's "entrepreneurial culture" and support from academic and industry partners.

Professor Alice Gast, Imperial's new president of Imperial College and a leading chemical engineer, said that the University possesses a unique ability to transform research into world-changing discoveries.

For example, theoretical physicist Professor Sir John Pendry won 2014 Kavli prize in nanoscience for contributions to nano-optics (how light behaves on a scale of one billionth of a metre) and manmade materials with unusual properties called metamaterials.

"Rarely a day goes by when there isn't a new discovery or innovation from Imperial's talented staff, students and alumni," Gast said, Guardian reports.

Sowter said that the performance by ICL faculty also helped the University to surpass some of the world's leading institutions like Harvard, UCL and Oxford.

The other universities in the top 10 are Stanford, the California Institute of Technology, Princeton and Yale.

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