ESCP Business School (London) lifted the Business School of the Year trophy at this year’s Times Higher Education Awards

These awards, now in their 14th year and widely referred to as the “Oscars of higher education”, shine a spotlight on the exceptional achievements of individuals, teams and institutions working in our sector today. 

The award was presented in front of 1,000 business and sector leaders at the Grosvenor House Hotel on Park Lane, with U.K. Dean Professor Simon Mercado receiving the prize from Sharon Butler, EVP for Global Education at official sponsor Flywire, and broadcaster Sandi Toksvig (pictured).

ESCP has not been afraid to tackle the questions and challenges thrown up by a rapidly changing political and commercial environment. In doing so, via a wide range of pioneering initiatives, it has claimed the title of Business School of the Year.

Maintaining its reputation for innovation and excellence in international management education, the School launched a new MBA in International Management. ESCP also expanded its innovative Bachelor in Management (BSc) programme, which moves students across three European countries in three years, tapping into its network of European campuses.

Responding to Brexit, the School put politicians from the U.K. and continental Europe together with leading industry figures for a series of ‘Re-thinking Europe’ events. It launched a collaborative book project in which students worked with Nicole Fontaine, former President of the European Parliament. Such activities cemented the School as a symbol of Anglo-French co-operation and as a leading European and U.K. institution.

The judges were especially impressed by ESCP’s response to large-scale technological and environmental developments. They praised the School’s Electric Vehicle Road Trip (EVRT) project, in which students used electrical vehicles to visit 10 European countries so as to encourage the use of carbon-neutral transport. The judges also identified the School’s response to a call in the UK government’s industrial strategy to develop executives for the fourth industrial revolution.  Amongst several initiatives here, the School introduced a new Executive Specialised Master (EMS) in Manufacturing Automation and Digital Transformation, run in collaboration with the advanced robotics company, Comau.

In summary, they praised ESCP Business School (London) for undertaking activities that were not only responsive but also innovative. “Higher education is not always credited with being quick to respond to changing business and political environments, but this business school managed to deal with changing government priorities in an engaging way, producing programmes around Brexit and the industrial strategy,” the panel said.

Professor Simon Mercado, Dean of the London School and Campus, remarks:

“This award is testament to a bold educational strategy that harnesses Europe’s diversity as well as to the excellence of our staff, students and alumni.  As a European school at the heart of the U.K., we are honoured to receive such recognition and to celebrate the strength of our U.K. and European sectors.”

Professor Frank Bournois, President and Executive Dean of ESCP, adds:

“We are proud of our British presence and of the U.K. sector into which we have been welcomed and recognised. We continue to do all that we can to strengthen U.K.-European ties and to work warmly with our peer institutions in order to advance international management education and research.”

THE editor John Gill said:

“At a time when universities face challenges and headwinds, when politics and social attitudes can seem to call into question many of the things that they stand for and hold dear, it is particularly important to champion the values, creativity and dedication of those who live and breathe higher education. 

“As ever, our shortlists represent the best of the best, but our judges also reported that this year’s entries were the strongest that they could remember, so all those honoured should be incredibly proud. It's THE's great honour to help celebrate their success.”

For more coverage of the awards, including photos from the ceremony, please visit

Details are also online at Times Higher Education and, of course, the awards will feature in next week’s issue of THE magazine.


The full list of this year’s winners is below, and profiles of their winning entries can be viewed here.

  • University of the Year: University of Essex
  • Business School of the Year: ESCP Business School (London)
  • The Lord Dearing Lifetime Achievement Award: Baroness Mary Warnock
  • International Collaboration of the Year: University of Central Lancashire
  • Outstanding Support for Students: University of Kent
  • Research Project of the Year: Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences: University of Leicester
  • Research Project of the Year: STEM: University of Hertfordshire
  • Most Innovative Teacher of the Year: Theo Gilbert, University of Hertfordshire
  • International Impact Award: Canterbury Christ Church University, in collaboration with the Palestinian Ministry of Education and Higher Education
  • Outstanding Contribution to the Local Community: Middlesex University and the University of Greenwich, in collaboration with The Refinery
  • THE DataPoints Merit Award: University of Dundee
  • Outstanding Contribution to Leadership Development: University of Stirling
  • Technological Innovation of the Year: Harper Adams University
  • Widening Participation or Outreach Initiative of the Year: University of East London
  • Outstanding Research Supervisor of the Year: Helen Gleeson, University of Leeds
  • Outstanding Entrepreneurial University: King's College London
  • Excellence and Innovation in the Arts: University of Central Lancashire
  • Most Innovative Contribution to Business-University Collaboration: Recycling Lives, in collaboration with the University of Central Lancashire