UCD Smurfit Executive Development Open Enrolment Programmes ranked 48th in the world by the Financial Times Executive Education Ranking

Date: 15 May 2017

FT Ranking 2017
Pictured at the launch of the 2017 Financial Times Executive Education Rankings were Niall FitzGerald, Chairman of the UCD Smurfit School Advisory Board and Prof. Patrick Gibbons, Academic Director of UCD Smurfit Executive Development.

Monday, 15th May 2017:  UCD Smurfit Executive Development has been ranked 48th in the world and 26th in Europe for its Open Enrolment programmes, according to the prestigious 2017 Financial Times Executive Education Rankings¹, which have been published today. In securing 48th place, UCD Smurfit Executive Development was the highest climber year-on-year, jumping 21 places.  

UCD Smurfit Executive Development is the only provider in Ireland to feature in the highly respected Financial Times Executive Education Open Enrolment Ranking. Only nine business schools in the UK and Ireland feature in the ranking including: London Business School; Cranfield; Cambridge; and Oxford. UCD Smurfit School’s improved position in this prestigious ranking amplifies the school’s status as a centre of excellence for delivery of executive education and leadership development.

This ranking is based primarily on participant feedback using criteria including the quality of course design and teaching and the extent to which expectations were met. UCD Smurfit Executive Development was ranked 4th for growth and repeat business, 36th for quality of faculty, 39th for teaching methods and material and 42nd for aims achieved.

Following the publication of the ranking, Prof. Ciarán O’hÓgartaigh, Dean UCD College of Business said: “At UCD Smurfit Executive Development, under the leadership of Helen Brophy, we have relentlessly focussed on investing in faculty and facilities, to become an exemplar in the delivery of executive education. Increasing our standing in Financial Times’ rankings is independent verification of our status as an elite provider of open enrolment executive education programmes. Today’s achievement marks continued evidence of excellence as three of our programmes are now ranked in the Top 50 in the world by the FT”.

Niall FitzGerald, Chairman of the UCD Smurfit School Advisory Board, welcomed the publication of the Financial Times ranking, saying: “These ratings indicate participants’ high satisfaction with our open enrolment programmes and are further evidence that Smurfit Executive Development delivers some of the world’s best executive education experiences. Smurfit Executive Development plays a critical role in UCD Smurfit School’s mission to develop global and responsible leaders who step forward to improve the world".

Prof. Pat Gibbons, Academic Director of Smurfit Executive Development said: “The quality of management is a critical source of competitive advantage for companies be they indigenous or multinationals, so having a world-class Executive Education provider based in Ireland is important for these organisations who are competing globally. This ranking demonstrates the high regard in which UCD Smurfit Executive Development is held among executives in leading companies, as evidenced by the particularly strong performance in the criteria business growth and repeat business.”

Last year over 600 executives undertook various Open Enrolment programmes at UCD Smurfit Executive Development, across a variety of disciplines. Programmes on offer include a range of short courses and industry programmes; 12 specialist Diplomas and two MSc pathway programmes.

This most recent rankings announcement by the Financial Times is the latest endorsement of the quality of the educational offerings at UCD Smurfit School. In January, UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School’s Full-time MBA was ranked 70th in the world, rising 9 places from last year’s position, in the prestigious 2017 Financial Times Top 100 Global Full-time MBA Rankings. In 2016, the MSc in International Management was ranked 22nd in the world according to the FT Global Masters in Management (MiM) report with the MSc in Finance ranked 34th globally by the FT and, in December 2016, UCD Smurfit School was ranked 29th in the prestigious Financial Times European Business Schools ranking.

Rankings with strict objective criteria such as the Financial Times and the Economist are the only truly independent and internationally respected classifications by which the world’s top business schools are ranked.


For further information: Niall Quinn, The Reputations Agency (01) 661 8915 or (086) 827 4829 or Deirdre Smith (01) 661 8915 / (086) 329 9303

Notes to editor:

About the FT Executive Education Rankings:

The Executive Education open enrolment ranking is based primarily on participant feedback (80%) of programmes using criteria including the quality of course design, of the teaching and the extent to which expectations were met. School data are used to calculate the remaining criteria.

For further information on the Financial Times Executive Education rankings published today log on to http://rankings.ft.com/businessschoolrankings/rankings

About UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School

In 1964, University College Dublin became one of the first universities in Europe to offer the degree of Master of Business Administration (MBA).  In 1991, the graduate business school opened its own campus in Blackrock, County Dublin.  With over 100 faculty members, 1,400 students and 70,000 alumni worldwide, UCD Smurfit School is one of a small number of business schools worldwide and the only school in Ireland, to hold triple international accreditation (US - AACSB, European - EQUIS and UK – AMBA) .The school’s courses have been consistently ranked among the leading European business schools’ by the Economist and Financial Times, since 2000. The School is also a member of CEMS and the Global Network for Advanced Management, which are alliances of leading global business schools.

Link to Smurfit Executive Education Open Enrolment programmes: http://www.smurfitschool.ie/executivedevelopment/courses/

back to News Items