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Top Universities for Politics & International Studies in 2016

Top Universities for Politics & International Studies in 2016 main image

Planning a career in the political arena? Want to help shape the future of national or international policy? Start out by studying at one of the world’s top universities for politics and international studies, as highlighted in the QS University Rankings by Subject 2016.

You can click here to find out how the ranking is compiled, and see the full interactive ranking table here.

Top 10 Universities for Politics & International Studies

Based on the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2016


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United States


Top universities for politics & international studies in the US & Canada 

A total of 46 US universities are ranked in the top 200 for this subject, of which 24 are in the top 100 and 17 in the top 50.

Outside of the five US entries in the top 10 (listed above), the next four leading US representatives are Georgetown University (11th), Columbia University (12th), the University of Chicago (14th) and the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA, 15th).

Meanwhile Canada has nine entrants in the ranking, including three among the world’s top 50: the University of TorontoMcGill University and the University of British Colombia.

Top universities for politics & international studies in Europe

The UK is another hub of top political science schools, with 30 institutions featured in the ranking. Outside of the top 10 (see above), these include King’s College LondonSOAS – School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London and the University of Essex, as well as three more UK entries in the top 50.

Across the rest of Europe you’ll find nine top universities for politics and international studies in Germany and a further six in Italy. Of these, Germany’s Freie Universität Berlin and Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, and Italy’s European University Institute, are all featured within the top 50. Also with six entries is Belgium, of which two are in the top 100.

The Netherlands and Switzerland each offer five leading political science schools, the highest ranked of which are the Netherlands’ Leiden University and the University of Amsterdam, as well as the Swiss ETH Zurich, all of which are in the top 50. 

Nordic Europe meanwhile lays claim to 13 top political science schools, with four each in Sweden and Denmark, three in Norway and two in Finland. While the University of Copenhagen is the only Nordic school within the top 50 for this subject, it’s joined among the top 100 by fellow Danish institution Aarhus University, Sweden’s Lund University and Uppsala University, Finland’s University of Helsinki and Norway’s University of Oslo.

Also with four offerings is Spain, including the Universidad Complutense de Madrid in the 101-150 range. In France, Sciences Po Paris (4th) is joined by the Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne in the 51-100 range. Russia has three top universities for politics and international studies, including Lomonosov Moscow State University in the top 100. 

Next up is Ireland with two top political science schools: Trinity College Dublin in the top 50 and University College Dublin in the top 100. Each with one representative in the ranking are Austria, Hungary and Poland. Among these, Hungary’s Central European University is the highest ranked, placed 40th in the world for politics and international studies.

Top universities for politics & international studies in Australia & New Zealand

The ranking features 11 top political science schools in Australia, including seven within the top 100 worldwide. Australian National University, in 8th place, is joined in the top 50 by the University of Sydney and the University of Melbourne. Also in the top 100 are Griffith UniversityMonash University, the University of New South Wales and the University of Queensland.

Of the three universities in New Zealand featured in this ranking, the University of Auckland is the highest ranked at 51-100.

Top universities for politics & international studies in Asia 

The leading countries in Asia for politics and international studies are South Korea and Japan, each with six entries in the ranking. Of these, the leaders are Japan’s University of Tokyo and Kyoto University, as well as South Korea’s Seoul National University, all of which are in the top 50. South Korea and Japan each have two more entries in the top 100.

Of the four universities in mainland China featured in this ranking, three are within the top 50: Peking University, Fudan University and Tsinghua University. Of the three universities in Hong Kong featured, the highest ranked is the University of Hong Kong (23rd), with the remaining two both within the top 100.

Singapore and Taiwan each have two top political science schools within the world’s top 100, led by the National University of Singapore (13th).

Lastly, India also has one entry in the ranking, Jawaharlal Nehru University, in the top 100. 

Top universities for politics & international studies in Latin America 

Of the 12 leading political science schools in Latin America, five belong to Brazil. Of these, the Universidade de São Paulo is the highest ranked at 51-100. Colombia has three entries, with Universidad de Los Andes Colombia leading the way, at 101-150. 

Mexico takes two spots in the ranking, with the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) at 101-150 and the Tecnológico de Monterrey at 151-200.

Argentina and Chile each have one school featured in the ranking. These are the Argentinian Universidad de Buenos Aires at 51-100 and the Chilean Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile at 101-150.

Top universities for politics & international studies in Africa & the Middle East

Three top universities for politics and international studies are claimed by Turkey, including Bilkent University (101-150). The Hebrew University of Jerusalem is Israel’s only offering, in the 151-200 range.

South Africa is the only African country featured in this ranking, with the University of Cape Town at 51-100 and the University of Witwatersrand at 151-200.

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Sabrina Collier's profile image
Written by Sabrina Collier
The former Assistant Editor of TopUniversities.com, Sabrina wrote and edited articles to guide students from around the world on a wide range of topics. She has a bachelor's degree in English Literature and Creative Writing from Aberystwyth University and grew up in Staffordshire, UK. 

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Hi Sabrina :) Do you know how to apply to a scholarshıp to Manchester Unıversıty wıth Politics Undergraduate preferred? Will be truly thankful for your response

Hi Naufal, I'd advise you to browse the University of Manchester's official website for details on the scholarships they have available and how you can apply. :)