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Best European Business Schools Ranked By Bloomberg

What are the best business schools in Europe? Find out in the Bloomberg Best European Business Schools ranking of top MBA programs

By  Chloé Meley

Wed Sep 15 2021

Bloomberg Businessweek has named IMD Business School the best business school in Europe in its latest ranking of European MBA programs.

The Swiss school was also the winner of the last Bloomberg ranking released in 2019. The 2020 edition was cancelled due to the pandemic. 

The top five ranked European business schools in Bloomberg's European MBA ranking come from five different countries, with Spain’s IESE Business School in second place, Italy’s SDA Bocconi in third place, France’s INSEAD in fourth place, and the UK’s London Business School in fifth.

Best Business Schools in Europe

IE Business School, Cambridge, Oxford, HEC Paris, and the University of Manchester make up the top 10 best business schools in Europe, according to Bloomberg.

With four schools in the top 10 and six schools overall, the UK dominates the ranking. The University of Manchester’s Alliance Manchester Business School climbed to 10th from 18th in 2019.

Spain also has six schools in the ranking, with newcomer EADA Business School, based in Barcelona, reaching 14th place. Another newcomer is EDHEC Business School, based in Nice, France, ranked 15th.

Elsewhere, HEC Paris dropped from fourth place in 2019 to ninth this year, St. Gallen from eighth place to 13th, and Mannheim from 10th place to 16th.

Meanwhile, IESE rose to second place from sixth, IE from ninth place to sixth, and SDA Bocconi from fifth place to the top three. 

Bloomberg Ranking methodology 

Bloomberg ranks schools based on four indexes: Compensation, Learning, Networking, and Entrepreneurship. For Bloomberg's US MBA ranking, a fifth index of diversity was added this year. 

Rather than determine the weightings of those metrics themselves, Bloomberg surveys students, alumni, and recruiters to figure out which aspect of business education is most important to those stakeholders. 

For the 2021-2022 rankings in Europe, Asia, and Canada, the compensation index—which is based on alumni’s earnings and signing bonuses—was weighted highest at 36.5%, followed by learning (25.3%), networking (23.8%), and entrepreneurship (14.4%).

Students, alumni, and recruiters are then asked survey questions on the business school experience, each linked to a specific index. Based on the survey scores and employment and salary data collected from schools, Bloomberg calculates the overall ranking. 

Bloomberg vs Financial Times

Bloomberg’s top five is very similar to the Financial Times’ European Business School Rankings 2020, with four names in common. 

However, HEC Paris tops the FT ranking, while Bloomberg’s top-ranked school, IMD, is ranked 10th in the FT's list.

The methodology of the FT ranking differs from Bloomberg’s, with more attention given to the quality of teaching and the faculty’s diversity in terms of gender and country of origin. The FT also looks at salary increase as a metric, rather than just post-graduation salary or average alumni salary. 

That’s why it’s important to compare different MBA rankings and track a school’s rankings positions over time to get a true picture of a school's performance.

Image used under this license.

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