Discover the best schools for environment and ecology research.
10. University of Minnesota—Twin Cities
Best Global Universities overall rank: 47 (tie)
Fact: The University of Minnesota Institute on the Environment supports interdisciplinary research on environmental subjects. One of its focus areas is ecological economics, which is the study of how the value of natural resources and the environmental impact of business activities can be factored into a company’s decision-making process.
8 (tie). Duke University
Location: Durham, North Carolina, U.S.
Best Global Universities overall rank: 22
Fact: Duke University environment students have the opportunity to conduct field research in the school’s marine lab and 7,000-acre forest, according to the university’s website. The marine lab is located within the Outer Banks, a group of islands along the North Carolina coast.
8 (tie). Imperial College London
Best Global Universities overall rank: 20
Fact: Imperial College London offers a Master of Science degree in environmental technology. Students in this degree program can expect to encounter an interdisciplinary curriculum that combines natural and social sciences. For example, the environmental pollution and control module within the M.S. program teaches students about the causes of pollution and various strategies for preventing and mitigating pollution.
7. University of Oxford
Location: Oxford, England, United Kingdom
Best Global Universities overall rank: 5
Fact: The University of Oxford’s Environmental Change Institute has an internship program for both undergraduate and graduate students focused on sustainability. The program provides students with financial support and pairs them with a mentor at their host organization, according to the institute’s website.
6. University of Queensland Australia
Location: Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
Best Global Universities overall rank: 42
Fact: Ecological and environmental researchers at University of Queensland Australia have been awarded many national scientific awards within Australia, including three Eureka prizes from the Australian Museum and a Fenner Medal from the Australian Academy of Science.
5. Harvard University
Location: Cambridge, Massachusetts, U.S.
Best Global Universities overall rank: 1
Fact: The Harvard University Center for the Environment offers, among other things, financial support to undergraduate students who want to conduct summer research on environmental issues. Students can work on an independent project or become a research assistant to a Harvard faculty member, according to the center’s website.
4. Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich
Best Global Universities overall rank: 25
Fact: Environmental sciences master’s students at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich are required to hold an external professional internship that’s at least 18 weeks long, according to the school’s website.
3. Stanford University
Location: Stanford, California, U.S.
Best Global Universities overall rank: 3
Fact: The Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment offers a variety of education and leadership programs for Stanford University students, including its Forum for Undergraduate Environmental Leadership and its Rising Environmental Leaders Program, which caters to graduate students and postdoctoral scholars.
2. University of California—Berkeley
Location: Berkeley, California, U.S.
Best Global Universities overall rank: 4
Fact: The University of California—Berkeley has a College of Natural Resources that offers a range of undergraduate majors, including conservation and resource studies, environmental economics and policy, and microbial biology, according to the college’s website.
1. Wageningen University and Research Center
Location: Wageningen, Netherlands
Best Global Universities overall rank: 79
Fact: Wageningen University and Research Center offers master’s programs in more than 30 subject areas, including environment-focused academic disciplines such as international land and water management, climate studies and urban environmental management, according to the institution’s website.
Explore the top 10 global universities for environment and ecology.
- 1. Wageningen University and Research Center (Netherlands)
- 2. University of California—Berkeley
- 3. Stanford University
- 4. Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich
- 5. Harvard University
- 6. University of Queensland Australia
- 7. University of Oxford
- 8 (tie). Duke University
- 8 (tie). Imperial College London
- 10. University of Minnesota—Twin Cities
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Updated on Oct. 29, 2019: This slideshow has been updated to include ranks from the 2020 U.S. News Best Global Universities rankings.