Economist MBA Rankings for 2013

Economist MBa Rankings

Looking for the best MBA program? The Economist MBA rankings are considered a good reference for anyone interested in attending a reputable business school. Their MBA ranking list is published every year and uses data that is accrued from thee years’ worth of surveys. The surveys that the publication takes into account are from both current students and alumni. Read on to explore the Economist MBA rankings for 2013 and learn about the methodology behind their system.

The Economist’s 2013 MBA Rankings

Ranking List

The Economist ranks full-time MBA programs in the US and abroad. The following is the 2013 list of rankings for full-time MBA programs in the United States only:

  1. University of Chicago – Booth School of Business
  2. Dartmouth College – Tuck School of Business
  3. University of California at Berkeley – Haas School of Business
  4. University of Virginia – Darden Graduate School of Business Administration
  5. Harvard Business School
  6. New York University – Leonard N. Stern School of Business
  7. Stanford Graduate School of Business
  8. Columbia Business School
  9. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) – Sloan School of Management
  10. University of Pennsylvania – Wharton School


Chicago University’s Booth School of Business has taken the top spot of the Economist MBA rankings for three out of the last four years. Notably, the University of California at Berkeley moved up from position six in 2012 to the number three spot in 2013. The Economist seems to give weight to non-Ivies, with only four of the top 10 schools on their list being an Ivy League university. Harvard, which is typically in the number one or two spot in other MBA ranking systems, is only in fifth place on the Economist’s list, while Stanford, which is often placed in the top two, is in seventh place. Yale is missing from the top 10 altogether, with a ranking of 17 out of all US schools.

Understanding the Economist MBA Ranking Methodology

Survey of Students and Alumni

The Economist’s rankings are based on a two-stage survey of students and alumni, as well as input from the schools. Student and alumni surveys make up 20% of the total ranking, while the data schools provide make up 80% of the total ranking. In order to participate, schools with full-time MBA programs must attain a minimum number of responses to the surveys from current students and alumni who have graduated within the last three years.

2013 Data Collection

The latest rankings collected data during spring 2013 using two web-based questionnaires. Schools distributed the web address of these questionnaires to their students and graduates. The Economist audited the results for multiple or false entries and subjected the data to verification checks.

Measures Used to Calculate

The Economist uses the following measures to calculate its MBA rankings:

  • Open new career opportunities (35%)
  • Personal development/education experience (35%)
  • Increase salary (20%)
  • Potential to network (10%)

Weighted Average Data from the Past Three Years

To provide a well-rounded picture of the school, the Economist took a weighted average of data from 2013 (50%), 2012 (30%), and 2011 (20%).

Every School Has a Unique Score

Unlike other MBA ranking lists, the Economist does not include any schools with “equal” rankings. Each school has a unique score.

Rankings May Fluctuate

The publication states that its MBA rankings are little more than an indication of the MBA market at a particular time. Factors that come into play include the salaries of recent alumni, the situation at the school at the time surveys are carried out, and the availability of jobs. The results of rankings are volatile and may fluctuate, which is why the Economist evaluates data from over a three-year period and strives to create a more well-rounded picture. This ensures that sudden movements in data are reflected gradually over time.

Finding the Best Business School for You

A career in business starts by finding the right business school. Each year, the Economist selects 130 business schools to participate in its survey and share data. Their MBA rankings can be a helpful tool in determining which business schools are worth the investment. Consider the Economist MBA rankings and their methodology when evaluating MBA programs, so you can find the best business school for your needs.