University of Hull named in top global 100 for Impact

The University of Hull has been named in the world's top 100 in the Times Higher Education (THE) Impact Rankings, released today (Wednesday, 27 April 2022).

These are global rankings based on the United Nations’ (UN) 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

With remarkable successes in a number of impact categories including peace and justice, inequalities, partnerships, life below water, the 2022 ranking shows the University of Hull is taking action taken towards the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

These goals are an urgent call for action for countries to work in partnership, to address global challenges, to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all.

With a record number of over 1400 universities from around the globe taking part in this year’s rankings, the University of Hull achieved joint 81st ranking overall and impressive results in the goals/categories focused on partnerships, life below water, peace and social justice, and reduced inequalities.

Professor Susan Lea, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Hull, said: “We are just delighted to be ranked in the THE top 100 for Impact based on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

“The University of Hull’s Strategy 2030 puts social justice and environmental sustainability at the heart of what we do, reflecting our long contribution to these global issues and our excellence in research, education and community engagement.

“As we address some of the toughest challenges facing society, our colleagues are making a difference – from health inequalities to sustainable business practices, and from coastal erosion to modern-day slavery.

“Importantly, this latest success follows a series of ranking successes achieved last year when the University continued its upward trajectory in the Times and the Guardian league tables.

“This achievement reflects the hard work, passion and commitment of our staff and students, as well as the strength of our partnerships in serving our region and beyond.”

Professor Susan Lea, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Hull

The University’s success is based on the following categories of the Impact rankings

Partnership for the Goals: joint 19th out of 1438 (SDG 17)

Sustainable development is the responsibility of every part of society, across the world. It cannot be achieved without linkages, across the goals, but also between institutions, governments, companies, Non-Government Organisations, and people.

THE looks at the ways in which universities support the SDGs through collaboration with other countries, the promotion of best practices and the publication of data and evidence. Unless all partners work together towards the SDGs, they cannot be achieved.

Life Below Water: 21st out of 452 (SDG 14)

Life Below Water looks at the broader ecosystem. Oceans, rivers and watersheds that link to them, are the largest part of our ecosystem. 40% of the world’s population lives within 100km of the coast, and we all rely – directly or indirectly – on the sea.

THE is capturing how universities are protecting and enhancing aquatic ecosystems like lakes, ponds, streams, wetlands, rivers, estuaries and the open ocean.

Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions: 25th out of 809 (SDG 16)

SDG 16 explores some of the underlying factors that are needed in order to ensure delivery of the other SDGs. Peace and Justice go hand in hand and are vital for equity between people and countries. Institutions need to be strong enough to maintain a focus on delivering the SDGs. This can range from individual justice – eradicating modern slavery and people trafficking – to ensuring that our countries have the evidence base needed to react appropriately to crises.

THE focusses on how universities can support, and be, strong institutions in their countries and promote peace and justice. It explores universities’ research on law and international relations, their participation as advisers for government and their policies on academic freedom.

Reduced Inequalities: 35th out of 796 (SDG 10)

Equality needs to underpin every aspect of sustainability if the objectives of the SDGs are to be met. SDG 10 takes a broader look at the intersectionality of disadvantage. This disadvantage can be felt through all of the other key issues raised by the SDGs – disadvantaged groups are both more likely to be unable to take advantage of progress and to suffer from the effects of climate change.

THE is exploring how universities are tackling economic, health based and international inequalities.

At the forefront of the University of Hull’s vision and values is a commitment to social justice, equality, inclusion and sustainable development.

The University’s research transforms lives by working with disadvantaged communities and giving them a voice, enabling them to overcome injustice.

The University is proud to have maintained its excellent record in recruitment of students from underrepresented groups and will continue to ensure that our local and regional communities benefit from our presence, priorities, actions and partnerships.

A longer term project focussing on food insecurity in the region, taking the existing high levels of deprivation in parts of the local area into account has been established, to inform the development of a three-year strategic food poverty action plan in Hull, to support and take action on the issue.

The Wilberforce Institute helped to shape the UK's Modern Slavery Act (2015) and was awarded the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for its outstanding contribution to uncovering slavery around the globe, and highlighting how learning lessons from the past can improve our future. The University’s Centre for British Politics provides research and evidence to parliamentary committees.

The Humber is well established as the UK’s Energy Estuary and led by the Energy and Environment Institute, its various partnerships seek to develop the region as a global demonstrator of a zero carbon economy, in line with the University’s ambitious commitment to be carbon neutral by 2027. The Institute is leading a variety of interdisciplinary projects and partnerships tackling some of the biggest global challenges we face.

For example, The University is a Partner in the Living with Water initiative – working closely with Yorkshire Water, Environment Agency, Hull City Council and East Riding of Yorkshire Council to improve flood resilience and prevention across Hull & East Riding. The University recently led a major household study to explore the impact of the devastating 2007 floods in Hull on families across the city.

The University of Hull’s Strategy 2030 puts social justice and environmental sustainability at the heart of what we do, reflecting our long contribution to these global issues.

Professor Susan Lea

Vice-Chancellor of the University of Hull

Highlights of other rankings success for the University of Hull

  • The University’s improved performance over the last three years saw the University rise by 53 places in the Guardian University Guide and by 51 places in the Times Good University Guide since 2019.
  • The rise of 53 places in the Guardian University Guide is the greatest increase experienced by any university in its rankings during this period.
  • Among the universities in the Yorkshire and Humber region, The University of Hull is now ranked 4th by both the Times and The Guardian.
  • The highest ranking subjects in the Guardian are as follows: American Studies ranked 1st out of 9 institutions nationally, with Physics placing 7th out of 44. Earth & Marine Sciences ranked 9th out of a total 36 institutions, as Education also made the top 10, placing 9th out of 83.


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