Best MBA Schools 2009


A popular career move during economic downturns is to go back to school.

If you’re shopping around for a good MBA school, consider BusinessWeek’s recently published rankings of U.S. and international business schools (published every other year):

Best International Business Schools

  1. Queen’s University, Canada
  2. IE Business School, Spain
  3. INSEAD, France (with satellite campus in Singapore)
  4. Western Ontario (Ivey), Canada
  5. London Business School, UK
  6. ESADE, Spain
  7. IMD, Switzerland (which was Forbes’ best global business school last year)
  8. Toronto (Rotman), Canada
  9. IESE, Spain
  10. Oxford (Saïd), UK

Best U.S. Business Schools

  1. University of Chicago (“Booth”) (also with satellite campus in Singapore)
  2. Harvard University
  3. Northwestern University (Kellogg)
  4. University of Pennsylvania (Wharton)
  5. University of Michigan (Ross)
  6. Stanford University
  7. Columbia University
  8. Duke University (Fuqua)
  9. MIT (Sloan)
  10. UC Berkeley (Haas)
  11. Cornell University (Johnson)
  12. Dartmouth (Tuck)
  13. NYU (Stern)
  14. UCLA (Anderson)
  15. Indiana University (Kelley)
  16. University of Virginia (Darden)
  17. UNC – Chapel Hill (Kenan-Flagler)
  18. Southern Methodist (Cox)
  19. Carnegie Mellon (Tepper)
  20. University of Notre Dame (Mendoza)

See also report on Forbes’ ranking of best MBA for last year (also published every other year).


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  1. Borat Sagdiyev on

    Wheww pretty interesting I must say, just a week or 2 back NTU was on the top 25 business school list isnt it. I must say BBAs seemed to be way less documented on as compared to MBAs. Something that may explain the crazy surge and hence tough cut-off scores in NTU business school from Pre-U students.

  2. BBAs are overrated. They have been traditionally the source of labour supply for the financial sector. With banking on the decline, all the newly minted BBA grads will face humongous difficulties looking for the jobs they are trained to do, more so than their counterparts in arts, science, engineering and of course accountancy, law and medicine. That said, I believe talented executives with good MBAs and years of relevant experience in their fields will always be in demand.

  3. US business schools are overrated. You just need to take a look at the source of the current worldwide economic crisis to see that the US education system has not delivered the ethical and social responsibility that it should have.

    Separately, studying MBA outside of the US seems to become more popular. Most of the foreign schools, eg NUS, NTU, also partner with US schools to provide what I think may be the best compromise of two worlds — an Asian focus and a US curriculum. It’s about time that some other country takes the lead in new MBA curriculum. What about China? Or India?

    Both these countries have good schools that seem to accept only the top of the top of their undergraduates applicants. Names such as Peking, Tsinghua, IIM will be famous one day if they are not already.

  4. Borat Sagdiyev on

    I do agree perhaps they are. But BBAs definitely general compared to other degrees, too general to be of little employment value.

  5. anybody willing to venture a guess on how long ntu mba will last at or even better the 24th position? I think it’s a fluke and next year things will revert back to the norm.

  6. Can we please move on with an article on the loss made by Temasek? I can’t wait for the flaming and bashing that awaits her.

  7. Don’t really understand why some people are so fascinated with studying MBA?

    Have they calculated the Return on Investment?

    And if one has no people skills, MBA is utterly useless.

  8. Couldn’t agree more with SGDividends. The biggest thing about going for an MBA is the connections that you’re supposed to make with your fellow students.

    You can’t just geek out and study in isolation–you’ll be missing 90% of what the MBA is supposed to give you back for your investment.

  9. I’m not sure why people are so obsessed over networking. It’s way overrated. People do MBAs to get a better job in their current line,and to propel themselves into management, or for a career switch into finance or ibanking. Networking rarely figures in the equation unless you’re doing an EMBA. Look, how much have u gained from people u know in school, other than going for drinks and trading gossips?
    The good bschools overseas – not sure about the local schools – can give you a big headstart in a new career, typically in big-name MNCs, the fortune 500s, the best employers.
    Big corporates still prefer to groom talent with good MBAs. ROI is definitely good.

  10. peasant watcher on

    US overrated, your post contradicts itself. You start off claiming that US MBAs are overrated, which obviously is not proven because the most highly paid MBA grads are top US ones (Harvard and Penn and company). But strangely as you progressed in your post, you tried to promote the local ones that have tie-ups with US universities, saying its merit is that it gives a US perspective. It’s like you are clearly desperate for the US connection, yet started off sliming US universities. Must be of the local farmers in local universities. Typical.

    It’s common knowledge that local unis try desperately to bootlick and apple polish top foreign names, many times end up snubbed. And the only time any top US name gives a damn is when the government throws truckloads of money into financing ‘joint’ projects.

    Hey free holiday in the tropics and a banker that looks too eager to accede to anything I want if I would give it a little attention and time of day. Why not man?

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