A recognized expert in the field of academic and strategic planning, international expert on global university rankings Dr. Kevin Downing came to Tomsk to read lectures and conduct seminars to improve TSU international competitiveness.

Rector, vice-rectors, directors of institutes, deans and members of the University Governing Council were present at the first meeting with Dr. Downing. During his speech, the foreign guest analyzed the history of success of Hong Kong, China, South Korea universities , because they has made recently a big step forward. Kevin Downing presented a comparative analysis of Russian universities included in the top 15 today and decisive the task of improving international competitiveness. The expert noted that TSU and some others Russian universities have the most powerful positions in mathematics and psychology and identified those areas that need to be strengthened. Among them is the interaction with potential employers. - Previously, we invited employers to our university four times a year - said Kevin Downing. - Now they visit us twice a week and on their own initiative. We show our students and alumni, talk about how and what we teach them. Employers see who suits them and thanks to that 97 percent of our graduates easily can find jobs after graduation.

Speaking about the ratings importance, Dr. Downing said: - Your potential students and their parents, government running over that. They estimate you according to these ratings, whether you like it or not. Losing your positions can mean not only that you work worse, it also can mean that your competitors have intensified and worked better than before. Therefore it is always necessary to move forward. During the two-day visit, Dr. Downing will meet with the university leadership, directors of institutes, deans of faculties, heads of laboratories and heads of the TSU strategic directions. The lectures and seminars will be devoted to discussion of the steps that can lead one of the best universities in Russia to the World's top 100 universities.

For the reference: Kevin Downing, director of the department of knowledge management and analysis at City University of Hong Kong, Dr. Downing terms of reference at City University of Hong Kong includes such areas as strategic and scientific management, quality control, cooperation with the University Grants Committee, the University positioning in the rankings and institutional research.