M. Maricic, N. Zornic, V. Jeremic

University of Belgrade (SERBIA)
University rankings proved to be a valuable tool which can attract the attention of various stakeholders, as they provide information which can later be used in decision-making processes. Therefore, after the introduction of the first world university ranking in 2003, the number of university rankings increased and their methodologies became more sophisticated. Nowadays, the rankings tend to rank universities based on several dimensions such as research, citations, reputation, teaching, and more. Although internationalization plays an important dimension in several rankings, none of them ranks universities solely based on the level of internationalization. Herein, we propose the European University-Internationalization Index, which aims to provide new insights on this topic of high importance. The suggested approach can serve as a foundation for future research on the internationalization of universities and university rankings.

Universities worldwide are expected to adapt to the newly formed global academic environment. Therefore, they undertake policies and practices to internationalize their courses and prepare their students for the global job market. Several studies have been conducted to explore the potential benefits of the internationalization of higher education. Having all the presented in mind, policy makers and university representatives might be in need of a university ranking based on their level of internationalization.

European University-Internationalization Index:
European Tertiary Education Register (ETER) is a database specially created to collect data from European higher educational institutions (HEIs). ETER currently includes 2785 HEIs in the 36 considered countries and provides data on more than 50 indicators. The indicators which caught our attention are the indicators related to the share of foreign and mobile students at bachelor and master level. Herein, we propose a creation of a composite index, the European University-Internationalization Index (EUI-index), which will rank universities based on their openness to internationalization.

Suggested Methodology:
The usually cited stepping stones in the process of creating a composite index are the weighting scheme and the aggregation method employed. To overcome those issues, we propose the application of the Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and Composite I-distance Indicator (CIDI) methodology to create the EUI-index. Although the suggested methodology could be employed on universities from 36 European countries, we placed our attention on the universities based in the European Union (EU) member states.
Future directions of the study: During our research, we identified three possible future directions of the study. First, the post-hoc I-distance approach, sensitivity and uncertainty analysis, and the application of the clustering algorithms.

Discussion and Conclusion:
The CIDI methodology can be used to obtain a data-driven weighting scheme and an impartial composite index. Therefore, this methodology was employed to create a new composite index which aims to rank universities within the EU based on their level of internationalization. The final section of the proposed paper will put an emphasis on the obtained results and on possible policy choices countries and universities might make based on the ranking results.