(DNA Top 10 in 2014) MMU breaks into world ranking, credits ‘research culture’

(Originally published on March 6, 2014)
Digital News Asia (DNA) continues reprints of our top 10 stories of 2014, in conjunction with the ‘DNA Top 10 of 2014’ contest. For details on the contest, click here.
 
Another press release that made it to the top 10! I’d like to believe that it was because good news sometimes sells, and that Malaysians were proud to see a local university up there with the best.
 
But I suspect that part of the popularity of this particular article was the on-going controversy regarding the dropping standards of Malaysian universities. – A. Asohan
  • Highest ranked private Malaysian university in world rankings for Computer Science
  • Has always supported its academics in pursuing ‘high-impact research’

(DNA Top 10 in 2014) MMU breaks into world ranking, credits ‘research culture’CYBERJAYA-based Multimedia University (MMU) made it to the top 200 in the QS World University Rankings by Subject released last week, the first time for MMU itself as well as the first time for a private university in Malaysia.
 
The latest list by QS, which also compiles the QS World University Rankings and the QS University Rankings: Asia, takes a micro look at Top 200 world universities in 30 different subjects, serving as “a comprehensive guide to the world’s top universities, using data on reputation and research citations,” MMU said in a statement.
 
MMU was ranked as one of Malaysia’s top five universities for Computer Science & Information Systems, together with Universiti Sains Malaysia, Universiti Malaya, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia and Universiti Putra Malaysia.
 
The methodology used to compile the Rankings by Subject is based on four indicators: Academic Reputation, Employer Reputation, Citations Per Paper, and H-index Citation.
 
Numerically, MMU was placed in the 151 – 200 spot in the list, it said. Of the Top 200 universities in Computer Science & Information Systems, 52 were from Asia.
 
MMU also outperformed other universities in the country in terms of ‘Citations Per Paper’ and ‘H-index Citation.’

(DNA Top 10 in 2014) MMU breaks into world ranking, credits ‘research culture’

“Being included in this list is remarkable. To outperform the research universities in Malaysia in terms of Citations Per Paper and H-index Citation is [not a trivial] matter,” said MMU president Professor Dr Muhamad Rasat Muhamad.
 
Rasat sees MMU’s ranking as the result of the university’s efforts at organically growing its research culture, saying that from day one, the 17-year-old university threw its “full support and encouragement behind our academics so that they have the resources and opportunities to conduct high-impact research.”
           
He also called out the support structures within MMU. The R&D Division comprises three units, which are the Research Management Centre (RMC), Collaborative Research and Innovation Centre (CRIC), and the Institute for Postgraduate Studies (IPS).
 
These units assist MMU’s researchers to secure resources, research collaboratively to maximise their research capabilities, and ensure that MMU’s students stand to benefit from research activities, respectively, MMU said in its statement.
           
To ensure that MMU builds on this momentum and takes its research to greater heights, the university has established the Centre for University-Industry Engagement (UnitE), whose purpose is to bring the industry closer to MMU.
 
“One of the reasons that MMU is ranked so high is that we are very relevant to contemporary commerce, which is heavily intertwined with computer science and information systems,” said Rasat.
 
“With UnitE, we aim to be even more relevant, and rise up through the ranks in an organic and permanent way,” he added.
 
MMU was created as a result of a mandate given by the Malaysian Government to Telekom Malaysia Bhd, and was formerly known as Universiti Telekom, with its campus in Malacca. Subsequently, in 1997, Telekom Malaysia was the task set up Multimedia University in Cyberjaya.
 
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