Out now: QS International Trade Rankings 2023 | Top Universities

Out now: QS International Trade Rankings 2023

By Craig O

Updated December 14, 2022 Updated December 14, 2022

QS has partnered with the Hinrich Foundation to publish the first QS International Trade Rankings, featuring preeminent graduate international trade programmes from institutions around the world. 

These rankings were designed to identify programmes that upskill their graduates to access diverse career opportunities across global trade value chains, using criteria that rank universities on trade programme content, innovative teaching practices, industry engagement, how they get students employment ready – and employed.   

The new rankings include any MBA or master’s programme with the content to prepare students for a career in international trade. The main methodology indicators – as well as content and teaching – include academic and employer reputation, graduate employment rate, their faculty’s industry experience, and university partnerships with employers.  

If you’re a student considering working in international trade, or a trade professional looking to take the next step in your leadership journey, then these rankings will help you identify the courses that could best prepare you for success in the trade sector.  

Dr Drew MacFarlane, Rankings Manager at QS said: “This inaugural ranking, employing a bespoke methodology, is intended to begin a conversation with our sector on which institutions are truly elevating trade education.  

“Edition one is our call to the market to engage with us, provide sector-driven feedback and help us deliver a truly informative ranking to students wishing to enter or progress in this vital and exciting career path. We expect the methodology to change in response to this calibration in future editions.”  

This new ranking has been made possible by its sponsor, the Hinrich Foundation, a philanthropic organisation working to advance mutually beneficial and sustainable global trade through research and education. The Foundation offers research and teaching materials to aid and strengthen global trade education as well as research grants and select scholarships.   

What are the best postgraduate programmes for a career in international trade? 

The top 10 programmes from the inaugural QS International Trade Rankings can be seen below, or you can click here for the full table. 

QS International Trade Rankings 2023

Rank Institution Business school Qual. Programme name Location
1 Arizona State University Thunderbird School of Global Management  MIM Master of Global Management United States
2 Victoria University of Wellington    MIntTr Master of International Trade New Zealand
3 Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU)  Nanyang Business School  MBA Professional MBA (International Trading)  Singapore
4 University of Minnesota Twin Cities  Carlson School of Management MBA MBA United States
5 University of Cambridge Judge Business School  MBA Global Executive MBA United Kingdom
6 University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)  UCLA Anderson School of Management  MBA MBA United States
=7 Carnegie Mellon University Tepper School of Business  MBA Part-time Online MBA United States
=7 City, University of London Bayes Business School  MSc MSc International Business United Kingdom
=7 Stanford University Graduate School of Business  MBA MBA United States
10 KEDGE Business School   MSc  MSc International Business France

How can I use this ranking? 

This first-of-its-kind ranking is designed to provide insights to help prospective students aspiring to a career in professional trade, or to help those already in the trade sector to enhance their career growth opportunities. 

For those looking to develop their careers and embark on further study in the field of international trade, the ranking aims to identify the preeminent graduate international trade programmes worldwide.  

This will help those in the sector or seeking to enter the sector, in selecting the best programme in their region and internationally. It also enables companies in the trade sector to identify programs best suited to their talent recruiting and development needs. 

What skills do I need to develop to work in international trade? 

When asked about the skills and abilities which are required by today’s international trade employers, Kathryn Dioth, CEO of the Singapore-based Hinrich Foundation, told us: “What the trade industry needs is individuals who understand the global context for trade and feel prepared to pull the right levers to support their company through the next trade challenge.” 

As well as studying at one of the top-ranked institutions in our new ranking, aspiring trade professionals should look to develop the following skills: 

  • Agility and an ability to work independently – Kathryn said: “[Employers] want good communicators, good team players but mostly what they’re looking for is agile thinkers, who can understand and approach challenges from a different perspective.” 

  • Trade-specific skills – Including skills/knowledge related to cross-border trade, cross-border trade policy, cross-border logistics and supply chain management, cross-border trade finance and accounting, and cross-border leadership and soft skills. 

  • Enthusiasm for life-long learning – Kathryn said: “To be successful, you need to keep yourself plugged into what’s happening in your sector and in the world. Those working in global trade need to stay on top of what’s going on in this extremely dynamic sector.” 

This article was originally published in December 2022 .

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Written by

As Head of Content, Craig is responsible for all articles and guides published across TopUniversities and TopMBA. He has nearly 10 years of experience writing for a student audience and extensive knowledge of universities and study programs around the world.

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