University improves in publication rankings


Our University has improved in all measures of the new CWTS Leiden rankings which assesses the scientific performance of 750 major universities worldwide.

Our position has risen from 166th in 2013 to 122nd globally in 2014 – up from 18th to 16th position in the Russell Group.

A key measure in the rankings is the proportion of papers published between 2009 and 2012 that fall within the top 10% of internationally cited papers, which applied to 12.8% of the University of Liverpool’s publications.

The top of the table is dominated by US institutions with only Cambridge, Oxford, Imperial, King’s College London and Bristol appearing in the top 50.


The proportion of Liverpool papers with international co-authors was judged to be strong, increasing from 52.7% last year to 56.3%. This is 66th in the global ranking and fifth in the Russell Group, up from 76th in 2013.

Research has shown that internationally co-authored papers arising from collaborations have a higher citation impact than those authored by researchers from the UK only. This trend of increasing international collaborations is a positive sign for the University’s future citation performance.

Of the seven broad subject categories in Science and Social Sciences presented separately in the ranking tables, Natural Sciences performed the strongest, with 15.7% papers in the top 10%, 80th in the global rank, and fifth in Russell Group.

Substantial investment

The University’s Provost for Research, Professor Ian Greer, said: “Over the last few years we have made substantial investment in research staff and infrastructure. It is exciting to see this translated so rapidly and so strongly into improved performance with increasingly high quality research outputs. Publication quality is a primary indicator of research excellence and, therefore, our results, using this objective metric, demonstrate that our investment and focus on areas of excellence has indeed been successful.”

The CWTS Leiden rankings are based on citation impact and collaboration metrics from research publications which have been published between 2009 and 2012. It has a rigorous methodology which is widely believed to use good techniques for allocating publications to institutions and accounting for differences in publication and citation practices between disciplines. Further information is available at:


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