At Swinburne, we’ve always been prepared to do things differently – to be bold, imaginative and distinctive in our pursuit of global best practice. We’re proud to perform strongly in traditional global university rankings, yet our definition of success extends far beyond these metrics.

While rankings provide a straightforward numerical measure for students, parents, academics, industry partners and funding bodies to consider, their methods and coverage face significant limitations.

That’s why we’re participating in More Than Our Rank – a global initiative that offers academic institutions a broader and more diverse definition of institutional success.

A complementary measure of success

We choose to define success beyond traditional rankings, in ways that align with our values and the diverse groups we serve.

For us, success reflects our commitment to fostering a supportive dual-sector educational environment, to celebrating diverse contributions to research outcomes, and to engaging meaningfully with and for our industry partners and communities.

For example, rankings can’t capture that Swinburne is the only university in Victoria to offer Children’s University – an international initiative that engages children to learn outside the classroom and increase their chances for educational achievement.

They don’t recognise how we’re changing students’ lives through scholarships for equity and excellence, or our inclusive and welcoming AccessAbility services. Or that we design our campuses in collaboration with our Indigenous students and staff, to connect our local community and Country.

And they don’t show how we’re embedding sustainability into everything we do, on campus and beyond.

From citations to real-world research impact

Rankings also don’t reflect how Swinburne’s groundbreaking research has vital, real-world impact. Citations alone can’t show how our research informs policy that improves lives, engages the public and improves equity, diversity and inclusion for better outcomes for everyone.

Right now, Swinburne’s research is:

  • helping tens of thousands of people access free online mental health services and free therapy through our Mental Health Online initiative.
  • supporting hundreds of small-to-medium Australian companies to future-proof their business, embrace advanced manufacturing and become Industry 4.0-ready, thanks to our Factory of the Future’s manufacturing, digital and commercial experts.
  • inspiring hundreds of school-aged kids to go into STEM and the space industry, through our Space Technology and Industry Institute’s program to send experiments, from yoghurts to seeds, to the International Space Station – and back!
  • working to understand and prevent technology-enabled domestic and family violence, particularly for women and children, through our focus on digital technology and cyber safety.
  • helping sporting clubs and athletes at all career stages understand concussion risks from contact sports in our Swinburne Neuroimaging facility.

Likewise, rankings don’t capture Swinburne’s countless firsts – like being the first Australian university to appoint a Chief Scientist, the first to guarantee work integrated learning for students and, as early as 1992, the first to house a cutting-edge class of supercomputer.

Rankings don’t show that we were first to establish a National Centre for Reconciliation Practice, to advance understandings of reconciliation and drive systemic change to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities’ cultural safety, rights and knowledges. Nor do they reflect our ongoing leadership in reconciliation, as the first Australian university to attain an Elevate-level Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP), with our second Elevate RAP underway.

Success from lab to market: innovation and industry engagement

Similarly, rankings can’t capture the positive effects of Swinburne’s pioneering university model – one that’s built on strong partnerships with industry, communities, government and other universities, and which embeds innovation and entrepreneurship in our DNA.

They don’t acknowledge our world-leading scientific collaborations, like the French-Australian Centre for Energy Transition and our historic partnership with the W. M. Keck Observatory in Hawaiʻi, and they can’t capture our research commercialisation success, from licensing royalties to equity in spinouts, short courses for industry and Swinburne-founded startups.

Put simply, the impact that Swinburne’s staff, students, and graduates have on the world isn’t captured in a single number. As the prototype of a new and different university that serves our local and global communities through all different types of education, research, and public engagement, we’re proud to be More Than Our Rank and sign on to this important initiative.

Find out more about our university

Learn about Swinburne’s century-long history and major milestones, read about our values and more. 

Find out more