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Top MBA Destinations in 2013: First Part (Study Based on Growth Opportunities and Salary Increase)

Top MBA Destinations in the WorldMBA Destinations are driven by factors like Economy, Post-MBA Opportunities (Salary Increase and Opportunities for Career Switching) and long-term brand value of the Business School. We analyze the top four MBA destinations in the world. These rankings are based on two factors: Economic growth rate over the past one-year and the average salary among the top Business Schools in the country.

Aspirants cite Salary Increase and opportunity for Job Growth as the two major reasons for pursuing an MBA program.  Here are our top four MBA Destinations


1) China

Expectedly, China takes the #1 spot by a large margin. Its economy grew at a massive 7.7% in 2012, which is actually a climb down from 9.7 in 2011. While the economy slows as it makes a transition from manufacturing to a services driven economy, China has shown staggering results. It is the world's 2nd largest economy hitting GDP of $11.4 trillion in 2011, and will inevitably displace USA from the #1 spot. It is this projected growth that makes China an exceptionally attractive destination for MBA students and MNCs alike.

China was the world's #1 exporter in 2011, with exports valued at $1.9 trillion. It is also the world’s 2nd largest importer, with goods worth $1.7 billion entering China. The Chinese manufacturing industry is diversifying from the low-cost model to high quality innovation model to meet the demands of a high consumption economy. Other factors like rising wages and an increasing standard of living mean that by 2020, China is expected to consume 19% of the world's luxury goods. In addition, 66% of the globe's middle class will call China their home by 2030.

Innovation in the manufacturing sector and an expected massive growth in the service sector are the main reason why MBA graduates have shown interest in China. For example, Tourism is China's fastest growing industry and accounts for 8.6% of the world market and is expected to reach #1 by 2020. Luxury goods are also a highly lucrative sector.  An MBA from China offers high growth potential in both the long and short term.

Finance, Manufacturing/Industrial Products, Consulting and IT/Telecom are the top 4 sectors for post MBA employment. A detailed description of Post MBA Employment, as well as the best MBA career services can be seen here. To learn about the top 5 B-schools in China, click here.

2) Australia


Australia offers MBA graduates with the world's highest salaries. It is also one of the world's top choices for emigration. The Australian economy has registered more than 20 years of growth. While the growth rate in 2012 was 3.7, it expected to reach a size of $1.122 trillion by 2015 at a growth rate of 5.1%. Though the economy is diversified, services and manufacturing, are the two major pillars of economic growth. Natural resources are abundant in Australia, and they dominated Australia's $272 billion exports in 2011. The country's attractiveness can be gauged from the fact that as many as 84,000 people received citizenship in 2011.

Consulting is the #1 industry for Australian MBA graduates, earning revenues of $6.6 billion in 2010. It is estimated that the sector will grow at around 5% per year, to cross $8 billion by 2015. Finance is the next preferred sector, considering that the country has one of the world's most advanced financial systems. WEF ranks Australia as the 5th biggest financial systems and capital markets in the world. The financial sector is one of the prime  contributors to national output, totaling A$135 billion. IT & Telecom is also a popular sector, with projected revenues of $66 billion, in 2012-13. In fact, it is expected to grow at approximately 8% CAGR until 2017. Details about Australian post-MBA opportunities as well as the top Career Services at B-schools can be studied here. Also read - top 3 B-schools in Australia.

3) USA


USA has been the world's most popular MBA destination for close to a century, but this evergreen country has slightly lost its attractiveness. US schools still dominate top MBA rankings. They continue to be pioneers in research and business education. MBA graduates from top US schools also earn more than their counterparts. According to Open Doors, 166,733 students came to study Business and Management in 2012.

USA's slide can be attributed to its waning economy, which is saturated with goods and services. Growth for American companies can only come from abroad from new markets. As a result, even though US is the world's largest economy with a GDP of $15.09 trillion, it grew at just 2.4% last year. However, US is among the world's wealthiest countries, with a GDP per capita of $49,000. It is also blessed with vast natural resources, well-connected infrastructure, and high productivity. US is also home to 133 of the world's 500 largest companies, more than twice that of any other country.

While post-MBA job opportunities in most countries are dominated by the Consulting sector, in USA Financial Sector is the #1 employer at most top B-Schools. In 2010, financial services contributed to 8.5% of US GDP. Banking, asset management, insurance and venture capital dominate this sector. Consulting comes next, with revenues close to $175 billion. While there are more than 100,000 firms, the world's top consulting firms are based in USA including Bain, Accenture, IBM, Deloitte and Booz Allen. The third top industry is technology, which is rapidly growing. This is surprising as USA is the world's top technology innovator. Healthcare is another popular sector for MBAs.

4) India

While India has thus far been on the periphery of the international MBA map, the top Indian B-schools are now coming around to the GMAT, making India an attractive destination for management students. The biggest strength of India lies in its growing economy, young population and mammoth middle class. In addition, the average young Indian's fluency in English makes it an attractive destination for outsourcing, while the high-level technical skills make India one of the world leaders in IT.

India is the 3rd largest economy in the world, worth $4.515 trillion. What's more, it grew at 5.35% in 2012, an excellent performance during a global downturn. In the next 20 years, the middle class in India will grow to around 40% of the population to account for the globe’s 5th-biggest consumer market. Another asset for India is its young population. The median age as of now is just 28, far lower than China’s 37.5, and Japan's 44.4. By 2020, 325 million India will attain working age, accounting for the world's largest workforce. This young population is expected to contribute towards production of goods and services. India’s middle class will also contribute towards overall consumption in Indian markets, resulting in a consistent 5% growth all the way till 2050.

The top post-MBA employment sector in India is consulting, which is still in its growing stages, with revenues close to $2 billion. The Financial Services Sector is also extremely popular, with the industry growing by more than 21% over the last one year. Technology is next for MBAs in India, with the sector reaching a market size of $80 billion in 2011. Tech sector provides employment to over 10 million people, and contributes to as much as 25% of India's exports.
To learn more about India's Post MBA Job trends, click here.

Click Here to Read Second Part of the Series - Top MBA Destinations

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