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We’re celebrating being ranked in the world top 50 of a prestigious league table.

Hundreds of universities across the world are ranked by the Times Higher Education (THE) global rankings, which are based on teaching, research, citations, international outlook and industry income.  

Research to make real-life impact  

We achieved a world top 50 ranking in the THE World Rankings by Subject 2023 for our Arts and Humanities and Law subject areas. Our Education and Social Sciences and Health subject areas were ranked in the world top 100.  

Arts and Humanities were ranked 33rd in this year’s rankings. Recent successes include our Department of English Studies celebrating the phenomenal achievements of colleagues Sunjeev Sahota and Kayo Chingonyi. Sunjeev Sahota’s China Room was longlisted for the Booker Prize and Kayo Chingonyi’s collection of poetry A Blood Condition was shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Poetry for the Best Collection 2021. 

Law at Durham retained a top 50 ranking, placed at 42nd. Recently Durham Law School led a new study which looked at how the set up and culture of music festivals can create dangerous spaces where sexual violence and harassment can be perpetrated.  

The researchers are now calling on festival organisers and local authorities to make a real commitment to tackling this matter and taking it as seriously as other health, safety and environmental issues when organising their events. 

The rankings saw Social Sciences and Health at Durham jump 22 places to be ranked 91st, with Education ranked 77th 

In our Faculty for Social Sciences and Health, a new study by the Department of Geography looked into the effect of climate change on the East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS), the world’s biggest ice sheet. The study discovered that the worst effects of global warming could be avoided if temperatures do not rise more than 2°C above pre-industrial levels - the upper limit set by world leaders in 2015 under the Paris Agreement on climate change. 

A world leading University  

Vice-Chancellor Professor Karen O’Brien said: “Durham is a world leading University and it is wonderful to see so many of our subject areas ranked so highly. It is a credit to all involved.  

“Our students benefit from high quality research-led teaching from some of the world’s leading experts in their field.   

“These rankings demonstrate our commitment to offering excellent education and research, in addition to a world class wider student experience across the University.” 

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