South African business schools rated the best in Africa


South African business schools continue to keep shining and are generally thought by many as capable of producing employable MBA graduates in Africa and the Middle East, based on the latest Quacquarelli-Symonds (QS) report on the World’s top 200 business schools.

In the most recent QS Global 200 Business Schools Report, which rates schools from around the globe determined by MBA employers’ and recruiters’ views, UCT GSB was ranked in first place, the University of Stellenbosch third, and the University of Witwatersrand fifth.

At the same time the American University in Cairo (second place), and the Suliman S. Olayan School of Business in Beirut (fourth) were among the top five.

The most recent QS Global 200 Business Schools Report is made up of 82 schools in North America, 67 schools in Europe, 36 schools in Asia-Pacific, 10 schools in Latin America and 5 schools in Africa and the Middle East.

The report is compiled using the thoughts and opinions of MBA employers, no other piece of MBA research encompasses this sort of geographically diverse set of schools. In 1999, only 15 schools beyond the borders of North America and Europe appeared in the research, as compared to 51 schools in the most recent report.



This signifies the widening global perspective that MBA employers are developing, as the globalization of business exposes a dependence on international managers with local talents.

Director of the GSB, Professor Walter Baets, acknowledges the value of multiple top ratings and states that it demonstrates that the school has positioned itself in a manner that remains relevant locally and internationally.

“The UCT GSB is delighted concerning this ranking. Once again it testifies to the high quality of our programmes, the remarkable impact we have on students and the exceptional quality of our MBA in particular,” says Baets. “The ratings also show that the country is putting out world class business leaders who can compete with the best in the world. What makes the business schools in South Africa unique is being located in an emerging economy that is characterised by complexity and diversity.”

As outlined by Baets, UCT GSB’s mission has been to differentiate itself as a business school with formidable and distinctive capabilities in emerging market business education and applied research.

“Our aim for some time now has been to always ensure that all our programmes are relevant in the context of new global business, in the context of new leadership development and in the context of emerging economy business,” says Baets. “This is further encouragement for us that Africa is able to develop its own models of business schools that will be more relevant to the local context without sacrificing internationalism. We don’t need Harvard in Africa we need something better.”

Marketing Manager at the GSB, Cherry Burchell, suggests that this ranking will go a long way towards expanding the belief that the GSB is the most desirable business school in the South Africa as well as on the continent, particularly when put together with the school’s NRF ratings, FT rankings and EQUIS accreditation from the European Foundation for Management Development.



As indicated by Burchell, South Africa stands to gain from the international interest which will be generated by having three local universities’ business schools within the top five of the entire continent by way of encouraging investors and international students.

At the same time, the University of Stellenbosch Business School (USB) has also ranked in the top three business schools. As indicated by Professor John Powell, director of the USB, the university has demonstrated year-on-year improvements, ascending from fifth to third place in this survey in a matter of two years. “We are very proud to have been selected in a report that rates business schools worldwide focusing solely on MBA employers’ and recruiters’ views of MBA graduates, as it benchmarks us against the best in the world.”

As stated by Powell, the USB has enhanced its initiatives to position the business school on the global map as well as in the hearts and minds of corporate leaders throughout the world. The School continues to be widely recognised with numerous awards, including an A-rating together with a Five Palms award by EDUNIVERSAL. The USB continues to be ranked in the top 100 leading business schools in the world at number 65, based on the Aspen Institute’s 2010-11 edition of its annual Beyond Grey Pinstripes survey – the only African representative within this exclusive list.

To view full report and country rankings – click here


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