Royal Agricultural University’s sustainability credentials commended in prestigious global rankings

18 June 2024

The Royal Agricultural University’s (RAU) work on food security, and protecting and restoring the land, has ranked highly in prestigious global rankings linked to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

This year was the first time the small specialist agricultural university had entered the Times Higher Education (THE) University Impact Rankings, a global survey of more than 2152 universities from 125 countries which identify and celebrate universities that excel across multiple UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

The Cirencester-based university ranked in the top 200 globally* for Zero Hunger (Goal 2) – coming in at joint 15th for UK universities and joint 12th for an English University. While, for the Life on Land Goal (Goal 15), the RAU was in the top 300* globally and joint 38th for a UK university.

Universities are able to enter in three areas and for the third Goal - Sustainable Cities and Communities (Goal 11) – the RAU ranked in the top 800* globally and joint 49th for a UK University.

RAU Chief Operating Officer Graham Pollard said: “Universities that are ranked under this global framework not only stand out in individual areas but they also demonstrate comprehensive excellence in contributing to global sustainable development. By excelling in a variety of SDGs, institutions showcase their commitment to addressing the worlds pressing challenges.

“We are very proud of our staff and students and how their efforts are reflected in our first ever submission. The results we have achieved show that, even though we were one of the smallest institutions - and the only English specialist agricultural university – to enter the awards, our public and community engagement with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals is world class.

“Our vision if to be the UK’s leading global university for sustainable farming and land management and this result shows that we really do practice what we preach.”

The RAU will be submitting evidence to these annual rankings again at the end of this year to continue evidencing its commitment to these global Sustainable Development Goals.


*for those institutions which submitted evidence for this SDG.