Impact Rankings 2022: peace, justice and strong institutions methodology (SDG 16)

This ranking focuses on how universities can support strong institutions in their countries and promote peace and justice. It explores universities’ research on peace and justice, their involvement as advisers to government, and their policies on academic freedom.

Check out the Impact Rankings 2022 methodology to find out how this data is used in the overall ranking.


Research on peace and justice (27%)

  • Proportion of articles in the top 10% of journals according to the Citescore definition (10%)
  • Field-weighted citation index of university-produced papers (10%)
  • Number of posts (7%)

This focuses on research that is relevant to peace and justice. The field-weighted citation index is a subject-normalized score of the citation performance of publications.

The data is provided by Elsevier’s Scopus dataset, based on a query of keywords associated with SDG 16 (peace, justice and strong institutions) and supplemented with additional publications identified by artificial intelligence. The dataset includes all publications indexed between 2016 and 2020. The data is normalized over the entire range using Z notation.

University governance measures (26.6%)

  • Elected representation on the university board (3.35%)
  • Recognition of a student union (3.35%)
  • Policies for identifying and engaging local actors (3.35%)
  • Participatory organizations to recognize and engage local actors (3.35%)
  • Publication of Academic Principles on Organized Crime, Corruption and Bribery (3.35%)
  • Policy supporting academic freedom (6.6%)
  • Publication of university financial data (3.25%)

The evidence was provided directly by the universities, assessed and scored by Times Higher Education and not normalized.

Working with government (23.2%)

  • Provide expert advice to government (6.4%)
  • Raising awareness among politicians and legislators (6.4%)
  • Undertake policy-oriented research in collaboration with government departments (6.4%)
  • Provide a neutral platform for political actors to discuss challenges (4%)

The evidence was provided directly by the universities, assessed and scored by THE and not normalized.

Proportion of graduates in law and civil application (23.2%)

Universities can support justice by providing suitably trained graduates, so we measured the number of law or civilian police graduates divided by the total number of graduates. All courses must include a positive ethical dimension and the data relates to the number of graduates in the 2020 academic year.

The data was provided directly by the universities and normalized across the range using Z notation.


When we ask about policies and initiatives, our metrics require universities to provide evidence to support their claims. Evidence is assessed against a set of criteria and decisions are cross-checked where there is uncertainty. The evidence does not need to be exhaustive – we are looking for examples that demonstrate best practice in the relevant institutions.

Time range

In general, the data used refers to the nearest academic year from January to December 2020. However, in some cases, the data refers to 2019 due to the disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. The date range for each metric is specified in the full methodology document.


Universities must teach undergraduate students and be validated by a recognized accrediting body to be included in the ranking.

Data gathering

Institutions provide and sign their institutional data for use in the rankings. On the rare occasion that a particular data point is not provided, we enter a value of zero.

See the complete methodology for the THE 2022 Impact Rankings here.

About Michael C. Lovelace

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