All rankings should be taken with a pinch of salt. But taking a look at specializations is a good way to see which business schools might be the best place to help you achieve your specific career goals.
Each year QS ranks global business schools based on seven MBA specializations, regardless of whether they are formally offered as a concentration.
The methodology used for each specialization ranking is compiled with three central criteria in mind: career placements, employer reputation, and research strength.
For career placement, the rankings consider the share and absolute number of graduates entering specific industries and functions. Employer reputation considers the reputation of each school among the employers in each industry. Research strength focuses on academic research output on a discipline level.
Of the seven MBA career specializations ranked, six are led by US business schools. These are Entrepreneurship, Finance, Information Management, Marketing, Consulting, and Technology. Operations Management, however, is led by the Rotterdam School of Management at Erasmus University, which is based in the Netherlands.
The MBA at The Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania—a former top-ranked program which dropped out of the Financial Times MBA ranking this year—is ranked the world’s best in Consulting and Finance.
Stanford Graduate School of Business, a mainstay around the top of the Financial Times Global MBA Ranking, ranks among the top three across five specializations and takes the number one spot for Technology, Marketing and Entrepreneurship.
Here are the 10 best MBA programs For Consulting, Finance, Technology, and more, according to QS:
You can skip to the specializations that interest you most by clicking one of the links below:
The Entrepreneurship ranking sees Stanford beat Harvard Business School (which ranks second) and Imperial College Business School London (in third place) to the top spot. Two other UK business schools that also feature in the top ten are Cambridge Judge Business School (fourth) and the University of Oxford Said Business School in seventh.
A significant 25% of graduates from first-placed Wharton went into consulting, based on 2022 employment data. MIT Sloan School of Business, University of Chicago Booth School of Business, and Harvard take the next top spots in the Consulting ranking, followed by the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College.
Wharton comes out on top of the Finance ranking, with US schools dominating the top five. The top five business schools for a specialization in finance are Wharton, Harvard, Stanford, Columbia Business School, and NYU Stern School of Business. The only non-US school to feature in the top ten is Oxford Said.
Erasmus University Rotterdam is the only European school to take first place in any of the specializations. Following closely behind in the Operations Management ranking is the Eli Broad College of Business at Michigan State University, the Penn State Smeal College of Business, and Polimi Graduate School of Management.
Stanford is the best in the world for MBA students pursuing a career in marketing. Stanford beat USC Marshall School of Business and HEC Paris for the top spot in the Marketing ranking.
A total of 22% of Stanford’s 2022 graduates have gone on to work in marketing. The school with the highest proportion of graduates in marketing, however, is USC Marshall, with 32% of students entering the field.
Stanford comes first in this year’s Technology ranking, while MIT Sloan features as a close second. However, European schools also fare well, with the third and fourth spots being taken by Oxford Said and HEC Paris respectively.
The business school with the highest proportion of graduates working in technology is the University of Washington’s Foster School of Business (ranked fifth), where 48% of all graduates go into tech careers.
The Information Management ranking sees mostly US schools take the top five spots. MIT Sloan is number one for Information Management followed by Harvard, Stanford, Wharton, and Oxford Said.
For information on how to launch your career in one of these key specialization areas, including free advice from b-school careers experts, download our BusinessBecause Careers Guide: What's Next After Business School?