Prince Mohammad Bin Fahd University Rises in the Rankings of Delivering Sustainable Development Goals Success

In a key indication of the growing prestige of Prince Mohammad Bin Fahd University (PMU), the university has significantly risen in the latest annual rankings of institutions of higher learning issued by an esteemed publication.

According to the Times Higher Education Impact Rankings, published by the United Kingdom-based Times Higher Education (THE) magazine, PMU remains ranked in the top 101–200 of universities worldwide in 2022—a significant achievement, seeing as the number of universities evaluated by THE increased substantially in 2022 to 1,406 from 1,115 universities for the prior year.  

In these latest rankings, PMU now stands as the second-ranked university in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia out of 22 universities. In 2021, PMU had ranked as the third university out of 11 universities in Saudi Arabia, again indicating an impressive year-on-year gain. Continuing with this theme of remarkable progress, THE ranked PMU as the third university out of 162 universities across the whole of the Arab World, rising from the number fifth-ranked university out of 129 institutions evaluated in 2021.

Uniquely among university ranking systems, the Times Higher Education Impact Rankings are the only global performance assessment that compares universities on their success in delivering the Sustainable Development Goals, developed by the United Nations. The Sustainable Development Goals are a set of 17 interlinked objectives for countries and societies worldwide to achieve a better and more sustainable future for humankind.

The fact-, data-, and analytics-driven approach of the Impact Rankings are intended to provide a meaningful way to compare universities across four broad areas: research, stewardship, outreach, and teaching. Since its founding in 2006, PMU has strived to achieve in all these areas. The university's continued rising in institutional rankings is a testament to the dedication and resolve of all those who have contributed to PMU as an institution over the years—from faculty to students and administrators and staff.

"Speaking for the members of the entire PMU community, we are honored to receive acclaim in the Times Higher Education 2022 Impact Rankings," said Dr. Issa Al Ansari, President of PMU. "Our efforts to build PMU into a globally recognized leader in achieving sustainability goals are succeeding wonderfully, and I extend my gratitude to everyone involved in this shared and important endeavor."

Aligning with the Sustainable Development Goals

As an institution with increasing global reach, influence, and reputation, PMU has worked closely with international organizations in a shared goal of promoting and attaining planetary prosperity. These organizations include the United Nations, as well as agencies of the U.N. such as the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), along with consultative partners such as the World Futures Studies Federation (WFSF).

"By collaborating with global organizations, our intention at PMU is to be a major facilitator and innovator when it comes to spreading prosperity," said Dr. Al Ansari. "We have accordingly aligned our educational and institutional mission with the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals, and we are pleased to see this intentionality reflected by PMU's high marks in the Impact Rankings."

As stated by THE in a press release, the Impact Rankings are accordingly intended to "explore the impact that a university can make, specifically by looking at themes of poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, peace and justice."

Those themes are deeply represented in the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. The United Nations created these ambitious benchmarks in 2015 with the stated timetable of implementing them by 2030. The Sustainable Development Goals are broad in scope and, by design, address areas critical to human prosperity.  

In essence, the goals seek to end poverty and hunger; encourage good health and well-being; ensure quality education; realize gender equality; make clean water and sanitation, as well as affordable and clean energy, available for all; continue economic growth and promote quality employment; nurture innovation and industry; construct enduring infrastructure; reduce inequalities; build sustainable cities and communities; implement responsible consumption and production; address climate change; steward life both in the water and on land; spread peace and justice through strong societal institutions; and work together through global partnerships to achieve these goals.

Each of the goals has a number of so-called targets, which can represent outcomes or means of implementation, and each target has a certain number of indicators that are relied upon to assess progress in the ultimate attaining of the goals. Overall, the Sustainable Development Goals are intended to "transform the world," as the United Nations states on its web portal that is dedicated to explaining the Goals and their history.

Realizing the Vision of PMU

The university Vision for PMU dovetails with this United Nations' characterization of the Sustainable Development Goals: "PMU Vision is to be a higher education institution having a transformative impact on society through sustainable innovation in education, research, and creativity."

By putting this Vision into action through continually making progress toward implementing and promoting Sustainable Development Goals, PMU is positioned to remain at the forefront of planetwide efforts in bettering humanity as global community and improving stewardship of the Earth.

"We are very happy to have received this recognition from the Times Higher Education magazine and will use this recognition to propel us forward," said Dr. Al Ansari. "A more sustainable future for all of us who share this planet is a paramount priority."