EIT Health network takes top spots on Europe’s most innovative universities ranking

7th May 2019

Reuters’ ‘Top 100: Europe’s Most Innovative Universities’ demonstrates how innovation is being embedded within education

Last week, Reuters released its top 100 list of Europe’s Most Innovative Universities 2019, which saw universities within the EIT Health network rank highly. In the fourth annual ranking, EIT Health partners accounted for 48% of the top 25, and took all of the top five spots.

EIT Health is a network of best-in-class innovators, working together to improve the lives of patients and citizens in Europe.

EIT Health operates a consortium model, working with academia, research and industry to drive innovation throughout the healthcare innovation landscape.

“We are extremely proud that a large number of our academic partners have been top-ranked in the list of the most innovative universities in Europe,” said Alexander von Gabain, Chairman of the Supervisory Board EIT Health. “At EIT Health, we see the tangible and significant benefits derived from the integration of all sides of the ‘knowledge triangle’. Innovation flourishes only when the brightest minds from academia, industry and other relevant stakeholders form strong interactive networks that enable and facilitate the output of creative solutions addressing unmet healthcare challenges for the best of patients and citizens. The recognition of the innovation power of our academic partners underpins the notion that EIT Health has selected leaders from relevant fields of contribution. Thus, we welcome the ranking as an independent validation of the quality of our consortium, devoted towards our mission of working together to improve lives in Europe.”

The so called “knowledge triangle” aims to foster better interaction between research, education and industry, which are key drivers of a knowledge-based society.1 In the European Union, it also refers to an attempt to better link together these key concepts, with research and innovation already highlighted by the development of the Lisbon Strategy and, more recently, lies behind the creation of the European Institute of Technology (EIT).2,3

The Reuters ranking takes into account 10 different metrics to determine how Europe’s universities are contributing towards innovation including the body of research produced, patents filed and the overall success rate of such patents (those granted), as well as commercial impact score which is an indicator of how their research has influenced commercial research and development. 4

EIT Health partner, KU Leuven, came in at number one for the fourth year running, with Reuters commenting that the university consistently produced a high volume of patents and papers that influenced researchers across Europe and around the world.

“At KU Leuven, we are proud to see our position in the Reuters ranking,” said Koenraad Debackere, Executive Director KU Leuven R&D. “It is a tribute to all KU Leuven researchers, to the management and staff of KU Leuven Research & Development, and to our industry partners with whom we have pursued a rich variety of fruitful and future oriented collaborations for many years.”

Links to EIT Health partners featured in the top 25 ranking:

1 KU Leuven

2 University of Erlangen Nuremberg

3 Imperial College London

4 University of Cambridge

5 EPFL – Swiss Federal lnstitute of Technology Lausanne

7 Technical University of Munich

10 ETH Zurich

12 University of Oxford

13 Technical University of Denmark

14 LUMC (Medical faculty of Leiden University)

16 Delft University of Technology

22 Sorbonne University

  1. Rus Mircea-Iosif, 2013. “”The Knowledge Triangle” In A Knowledge-Based Society,” Annals of Faculty of Economics, University of Oradea, Faculty of Economics, vol. 1(1), pages 942-947, July.
  2. The Knowledge Triangle. The European Commission. Available at:
  3. Catalysing Innovation in the Knowledge Triangle: Practices from the EIT Knowledge and Innovation Communities. The European Institute of Innovation and Technology. Available at:

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