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10 of the Best Business Schools in the World

Do you want to start your own company? Rise the ranks in the corporate world? Pursue an MBA? If any of those plans sound appealing to you, you might want to look into business schools that can teach you the skills you want and introduce you to the professional network you need.

To point you in the right direction, here are ten examples of some of the best business schools around the world, where you might choose to pursue undergraduate or graduate business studies. To help narrow down the list, I considered other recent rankings including those by ForbesBloomberg Businessweek, and Business Insider.

1. Stanford Graduate School of Business

The Stanford Graduate School of Business is often ranked as one of the top business schools in the world. Recently is was the top pick for career prospects according to Forbes magazine, and it was ranked the fourth best business school in the U.S. by Bloomberg Businessweek. Business Insider ranked them the best business school of 2012. They offer both Master’s and PhD programs, and they offer several dual-Master’s degree programs such as an MBA and MA Education or your MBA with a law degree from Stanford Law.

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2. Harvard

Harvard is probably one of the first top business schools to come to mind for most people. Like Stanford, they’re consistently ranked highly among competing schools. Most recently they were named the fourth best school for career prospects by Forbes and the second best business school in the U.S. by both Bloomberg Businessweek and Business Insider.

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3. University of Pennsylvania — Wharton

The University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School offers business programs ranging from the undergraduate to doctoral level, including executive education programs. This was recently named the third best business school by both Bloomberg Businessweek and Business Insider, and the sixth best business school for career prospects by Forbes Magazine. 

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4. MIT — Sloan School of Management

You might tend to think of MIT as more of an engineering school, but they’re also famous for the business programs offered by their Sloan School of Management. They recently made the top ten lists for all publications mentioned previously, and they offer an MBA program in addition to a Master of Finance, Master of Science in Management Studies, and an Executive MBA.

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5. London Business School

London Business School is the first non-U.S. business school to make our list. Businessweek named it the best business school in its international list this year. London Business School offers Master’s, Executive, and PhD programs in business and finance. Executive training programs can last anywhere from two days to four weeks, and they cover topics like HR, finance, and leadership issues.

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professional network
One of the most important elements of the best business schools is the professional network you can build when you attend one. — Credit:

6. Northwestern University — Kellogg School of Management

Forbes named the Kellogg School of Management the third best business school for career prospects in 2012. It was also named the fifth best business school by Bloomberg Businessweek and the eighth best business school by Business Insider. This school offers flexible MBA programs for full-time, part-time, and executive students in addition to undergraduate degrees and a doctoral program.

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7. University of Chicago — Booth School of Business

The University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business was named the top business school by Bloomberg Businessweek in the U.S. and it was named the sixth best business school by Business Insider.  Another flexible school, they offer an evening and weekend MBA program in addition to full-time studies.

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INSEAD dubs itself “the business school for the world.” They have campuses in France, Singapore, and Abu Dhabi, and they offer several MBA options in addition to executive education programs and a PhD program. INSEAD also partners with other top business schools including some on our list — The Wharton School and The Kellogg School of Management.

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9. Dartmouth College — Tuck School of Business

This year Dartmouth took the second spot in Forbes’ list of business schools with the best career prospects. It only took the ninth spot from Business Insider this year, and it didn’t make the top ten list for Bloomberg Businessweek (coming in at number twelve). An emphasis here is a small school environment — ideal if a huge university setting wouldn’t suit your interest or learning style.

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10. Columbia University

Columbia University in New York rounds out our list of ten of the best business schools around the world. Like many other schools here, they offer MBA, executive education, and PhD programs for business students. They came in at number seven on Business Insider’s top business schools for 2012. They were named the fifth best business school for career prospects by Forbes. But they didn’t make the top ten list from Bloomberg Businessweek this year.

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These are far from the only great schools you could choose from. What other institutions do you consider to be some of the best business schools? If you could attend any business school of your choosing, which would it be and why? Tell us in the comments.

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Written by
Jennifer Mattern
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