Skip to content

INSEAD Tops Poets & Quants International MBA Ranking

Poets & Quants has released its year-end ranking of international MBA programs, with INSEAD once again capturing first place.

Like the Poets & Quants ranking of U.S. MBA programs, the international ranking is created by aggregating major rankings from 2018.

Specifically, Poets & Quants ranked schools by combining four global rankings of MBA programs: Financial Times, the Economist, Bloomberg Businessweek and Forbes. The FT and Forbes rankings are each given a 30 percent weighting while the Economist and Bloomberg get 20 percent.

These weightings reflect the credibility of each ranking in the eyes of Poets & Quants. This year, the resulting list of the top 10 MBA programs outside the U.S. is:

  2. IESE Business School
  3. London Business School
  4. IMD
  5. HEC Paris
  6. University of Cambridge Judge Business School
  7. SDA Bocconi School of Management
  8. ESADE
  9. University of Oxford Saïd Business School
  10. National University of Singapore Business School

Notably absent from the top 10 is IE Business School, which was omitted from FT’s ranking this year. The result was a sharp fall from 4 in last year’s Poets & Quants aggregate ranking to 18.

In 2018, NUS was the only non-European school to make an appearance in the top 10. But Poets & Quants also helpfully provides a table giving the highest ranked MBA programs for 19 different countries.

In China, for example, CEIBS came in first, and fourteenth internationally overall (not including U.S. schools). In India, meanwhile, Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad was the top school, and Australia saw Melbourne Business School at number one.

Naturally, schools at the top of Poets & Quants list are schools that are consistently ranked well. In all four rankings considered, INSEAD and IESE placed somewhere between first and fourth.

Still, some of the top 10 schools have a little more variation in how they are ranked.

For example, IMD was first in both Bloomberg and Forbes, but ninth and eleventh in the Economist and FT respectively. Saïd placed as high as sixth in the Forbes ranking, and as low as thirty-second in the Economist’s.

Applying to top international B-schools presents special challenges. Compared with applying only to U.S. schools, there’s more variation in the admissions process from one school to the next, and figuring out what schools make a good fit is more complicated.

We can help you navigate these challenges and put together a personal brand that stands out at top global business schools. To get started, ask us for a free assessment!