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This is a first for the country and demonstrates the growing impact of Southeast Asia. 

By Ben Feuer

We live in an age of globalization, and nothing proves that more conclusively than the rise of new academic powerhouses in Southeast Asia.  For the first time, Singapore's NUS was ranked #1 in the Quacquarelli Symonds top Asian university rankings, outshining powerhouses like Korea's KAIST, the University of Hong Kong, and Seoul National University.

A look at the extended rankings reveals some additional intriguing facts.  Japan's top university is now ranked tenth in Asia -- a far cry from its absolute dominance throughout the 1980s, and a testament to the power of population and geographic size of the new emerging superpowers.

No country other than Hong Kong, China, Japan, Singapore and South Korea placed in the top twenty, although Thailand's NTU (National Taiwan University) was ranked 21st.  This seems to indicate a consolidation of the top educational minds and opportunities by the leading countries in the region, but ongoing plans to form an economic union (like the Euro Zone) may change that in the future.


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