U of T dropped two places this year, falling short of the top 20 category in the Times Higher Education 2012/13 World University Rankings.
“In Canada, all universities get the same thinly spread funding for research costs. This means that our best research engines run on fumes,” wrote Cheryl Misak,
U of T’s vice-president and provost, in response to questions. She said students and faculty alike should put the case to both the provincial and federal governments to invest more in the universities and the futures of young people.
“The student voice is important with those who govern this province and country,” Misak said.
Last year, U of T was ranked 19th overall, scoring 65.1 points in international outlook, a 3.9-point drop from 2011/12. THE’s 13 determinants include research and development (in which U of T scored 89.4, up from 87.4), citations (85.1, down from 86.5), and industry income (42.9, down from 44.9), as well as knowledge transfer and teaching and enrolment.
“The drop may be due to Canada investing less aggressively in its post-secondary sector than other countries are,” said David Naylor, the president of U of T, in a Globe and Mail report on October 3.
In a report on provincial post-secondary funding, former C.D. Howe Institute policy analyst Payam Pakravan commented that post-secondary funding models are outdated.
“They do a very poor job of meeting goals of quality, accessibility, and responsiveness to labour market needs that the sector should be striving for,” wrote Pakravan.
According to a 2010 Statistics Canada report, higher education expenditures normally account for more than one third of Canada’s gross domestic expenditures.
In the 2009/10 year, $11 billion was spent on research and development, and last year that increased by 0.8%. However, the total remains below the $30.5 billion spent in 2008.