First edition of University Impact Ranking (UIR) has been published, and although it’s still in a process of rapid evolution, the result is likely to substantially influence the long-term development of higher education systems across the world based on the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This study aims to analyze and critique the principal ranking system prepared by Times Higher Education which assess universities against the SDGs. This study investigated the reliability of Times Higher Education University Impact Ranking (UIR) and attempted to identify its contribution and impact of participating universities on their societies. Taking an explanatory case study approach, this study used observation, document study, and experts’ reflection as data collection methods. The findings suggest that UIR does not contribute sufficiently to identification of universities that have a good impact on their societies to achieve SDGs.
Keywords: Times Higher Education, University Impact Ranking, United Nations, Sustainable Development, Cross-Sectional Analysis, Iranian Universities