Social Impact

How seriously do institutions take their role in creating a more equal, fair and just world? As well as environmental impact, the QS Sustainability Rankings also considers university impact around today’s biggest social issues.  

The equality indicator assesses institutions on a variety of measures including the proportion of female students and faculty, the availability of public equality, diversity and inclusion policy, and the disability support available.   

The knowledge exchange indicator measures universities on their commitment to knowledge transfer in collaboration with less-economically-supported institutions, and a university’s inclination to partner with other institutions and organisations.  

Impact of education looks at the university’s research into quality education, alumni impact and academic reputation in relevant social subjects, and how free students and academics are in pursuing their research without censorship.   

The employability and opportunities indicator gives each university an employer reputation score and an employment outcomes score, based on how prepared students are for successful careers. Universities are also assessed on research into work and economic growth, and peace, justice and strong institutions, as well as the rate of unemployment within the country they’re based in.  

Quality of life is the final social impact indicator, used to understand an institution’s commitment to wellbeing within and outside of the university. We also look at research activity into quality of life, health options on campus and air quality in the region, for example.

More information: