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si Team
Thursday, November 2, 2006
IIT and IIM among world’s top institutes

The recent Times of London global ranking of universities shows that the Indian Institute of Technology (IITs) and the Indian Institute of Management (IIMs) are among the world’s best 100 institutes. The university ranking compiled by the Times Higher Education Supplement (THES) features the prized family of technical and management universities at 57th and 68th positions respectively.

The top slot has been bagged by Harvard University followed by Oxford and Cambridge universities, while the highest-ranked Asian university was Beijing University, taking the 15th spot.

Although the IIT ranking dropped by seven places from last year’s, the IIM’s leapfrogging of 24 notches is believed to be an important achievement. Another Indian institute to join the global ranking bandwagon this year is Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), which was ranked at 183 this year, nine points up from last year.

The survey further shows that American and British universities remain nearly half of the world’s top 100 universities. The U.S. leads the race with 33 universities and Britain following with 15, Australia and the Netherlands have seven universities each in the ratings. Switzerland and France have five each. India along with China, Singapore, New Zealand and Belgium has two universities in the league.

John O’Leary, Editor of the THES, suggested that the dominance of American and British universities at the top of the table had something to do with the dominance of English language in the academic world. The rankings were based on a survey by THES of 3,703 academicians worldwide, spanning several disciplines.

Sabeer Bhatia re-launches Arzoo

Hotmail co-founder Sabeer Bhatia has relaunched Arzoo.com as a travel portal. The “one-stop online travel shop” would help people book tickets for domestic and international flights, make hotel reservations, buy domestic and international vacation packages, besides finding weekend getaways and service apartments.

Arzoo, meaning ‘wish’ in Hindi, was first launched in 1999 but did not survive the dot-com bust that happened two years later. “We lost a lot of money in a short time and did not get expected returns,” said Bhatia.
Arzoo will soon launch its U.S.toIndia operations, and promises to increase the range of services like car rentals, travel insurance, foreign exchange and visa assistance. “Online travel in the country is expected to grow 10 fold over the next five years and we believe that this represents a great opportunity for us. The need of the hour is to provide customers with a one-stop travel shop that offers them a wide-range of options to choose from and a world class service,” Bhatia said.

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