Are America's top colleges losing their global competitive edge?

“We seem to be looking at the beginning of the decline of the great American public universities. … It’s the first sign of a worrying trend,” he said.

—  Phil Baty, editor of the prestigious Times Higher Education World University Rankings, on how America’s highest-ranked public institutions have been losing ground in the ratings. This year’s rankings came out today in Britain.

(The U ranks 42nd, up one since last year’s 43rd place.)