UNSW Retains AFR Best Business School Title

The University of New South Wales has retained the top spot in the latest 2023 AFR Boss Best Business Schools ranking with the University of Melbourne and Queensland University of Technology rounding out the top three.

The Rankings assess nearly 40 Australian business schools across three categories: quality, reputation, and career impact. In 2022 the AFR BOSS Best Business Schools ranking replaced the BOSS MBA rankings and is the only domestic ranking of business schools in Australia.

The annual event ranks universities on various criteria, including reputation, career impact and salary prospects for graduates, and performance in the national evaluation, Excellence in Research for Australia, which effectively scores research against world-class benchmarks.

UNSW ranked first in the overall combined ranking; first for quality; second for reputation; and second for career impact.

“Our mission is to equip our graduates and stakeholders to make a difference,” said Professor Chris Styles, Dean, UNSW Business School.

“These ranking results again reflect the quality of our students, the commitment of our staff, the reach and impact of an actively involved and energised network of more than 100,000 worldwide alumni, and the collaborative relationships we maintain with industry partners in research and graduate employment,” he said.

“Guided by our Business Advisory Council made up of senior industry and government leaders, the Business School’s transformative education and high-impact research helps our community find ways to create value for society,” he said.

1University of New South Wales89
2University of Melbourne88
3Queensland University of Technology78
4University of Western Australia75
5Monash University74
6Macquarie University73
6University of South Australia73
6University of Sydney73
9Deakin University72
10Curtin University71
11University of Adelaide70
11University of Canberra70
11University of Queensland70
11University of Technology Sydney70
15James Cook University68
15University of Newcastle68
17Edith Cowan University67
17RMIT University67
17The Australian National University67
20University of the Sunshine Coast64
21Griffith University63
22Australian Catholic University61
22La Trobe University61
22University of Southern Queensland61
25Western Sydney University59
26CQ University58
26Southern Cross University58
26Swinburne University of Technology58
29Charles Sturt University57
29Victoria University57
31Murdoch University56
32Bond University55
33Flinders University53
33University of New England53
35University of Tasmania52
36University of Wollongong51
37Torrens University Australia46

Edith Cowan University School of Business and Law (SBL) was the the best ranked school in Western Australia and the second best in the nation for its teaching and research quality.

The annual ranks universities on various criteria, including reputation, career impact and salary prospects for graduates, and performance in the national evaluation, Excellence in Research for Australia, which effectively scores research against world-class benchmarks.

The quality ranking is a mix of accreditation and performance factors, with particular recognition given to organisations which have chosen to undertake the rigorous process for accreditation by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), which SBL received in 2022.

In ranking SBL so highly, AFR highlighted the school’s flexibility offered to its cohort, given many older students also juggle family and work responsibilities.

Professor Maryam Omari.
School of Business and Law Executive Dean Professor Maryam Omari.

SBL Executive Dean Professor Maryam Omari said quality and care for students is in SBL’s DNA at an institutional and school level, and there is an ethos to provide support to students from diverse backgrounds where needed.

Professor Omari said this dedication to quality extended to all facets of SBL, including hiring practices, staff performance and course structure.

“We ensure staff hires have the right fit for our collegial and collaborative culture, and they are very student-centred in what they’re doing,” she said.

“We actually dig down and pull the layers back to see how a unit can improve in terms of student feedback: units, courses and curricula are all comprehensively monitored to ensure staff are provided with support they might need.

QUT was ranked 3rd on the overall combined ranking; 3rd for quality; 7th for career impact and 11th for reputation.

The results represent a three-place leap in quality ranking on last year’s results – and one place for reputation.

Professor Amanda Gudmundsson, executive dean of the QUT Faculty of Business and Law, said the secret to the QUT Business School’s success was being serious about engaging stakeholders.

“We do this by having students, alumni, industry and corporate partners, research partners engage with the co-design of courses, and the embedding of live industry cases for students to work through,” Professor Gudmundsson said.

“All students have the opportunity for work-integrated-learning experiences, international exchange, or participation in intensive study tours.

“For example, our MBA’s go on a study tour of North America, visiting our partner MIT Sloan School of Management and examining some of the challenges that business in the USA is facing.”

“Business in particular is a global activity, and therefore, it’s fundamental that our students are exposed to the challenges of their own backyard as well as those from around the world,” Professor Gudmundsson said.


Amanda Gudmundsson, Executive Dean QUT Business School

“We have many opportunities for students to work with colleagues from diverse industries, medical to agricultural, mining to public sector – this is often where innovation can occur, when students are able to explore applications and insights from different sectors and apply them to their own sector.

“This engagement with contemporary local, national, and international business is something that is often reported as a strength of student experience here.”

QUT Vice-Chancellor Professor Margaret Sheil said the QUT Business School was the first to hold triple international accreditation with AACSB, EQUIS and AMBA and had maintained it for 20 years.

“Only Monash and the University of Sydney also have the triple crown in Australia,” Professor Sheil said.

“International accrediting agencies and Deans from peer schools around the world are continuously reviewing our courses, staff, research, engagement, and industry impact.

“The continuous review process means that at QUT we are always seeking ways to innovate and improve the student experiences within our curriculum and ensure that our students and graduates are focused on contemporary industry challenges which may arise from our research or industry partners.”


Ben Ready
Ben Ready founded MBA News in 2014 and is the Managing Editor. He is a former business and finance journalist with Australian Associated Press (AAP) and Dow Jones Newswires in London. Ben completed his MBA in 2012 and was awarded the QUT GMAA Entrepreneurship Prize. He is also the founder and Managing Director of RGC Media & Mktng (rgcmm.com.au).