Reputation has focused much on China over recent weeks with the 5 yearly National Congress of the Communist Party taking place and the bolstering of the power of President Xi Jinping.

The congress followed the recent announcement from the Chinese Ministry of Education of the Double World-Class Project which sets out ambitions for increasing the influence of Chinese universities globally over the next 35 years.

It aims for China to have 42 ‘world-class’ universities by 2050. China Daily reports that “the institutions were selected after a process of peer competition, expert review and government evaluation.”, and include Peking University, Renmin University of China and Tsinghua University.

It is also reported that world university rankings will be used as one of the measures for the project.

With a number of governments now pursuing policies of raising the number of their national universities at the top of the world rankings, things are going to get fairly congested in the top 100 over the next few years!

More importantly, the Chinese project re-emphasises the importance the government places on global performance of its universities and ensures that state support will continue. Whether Chinese universities have in place the processes and structures to improve reputation is another matter; and one we will watch with much interest over the coming years.