about the index

Find the international education destination that is right for you, as student, parent or investor. The Bank of Communications Sea Turtle Index provides a unique tool to compare university cities at once as education and investment locations, looking at:


  • Educational returns: Quality and reputation of education vs value for money
  • Real estate returns: Openness, potential returns and risk with regard to real estate investments
  • Financial returns: Openness, growth prospects and risk with regard to financial investments
  • Work experience: Work and pay prospects for overseas graduates
  • Social experience: Quality of the social and cultural experience on offer

An overseas education is an investment in an individual’s future, and the index allows you to assess total potential returns on this investment, taking a holistic view of the developmental as well as financial rewards offered by each city. It was created through independent research by the Economist Intelligence Unit.

why sea turtle

In Chinese culture, a “sea turtle” is a high-flying graduate of an overseas university, who has reaped the benefits of a top-rate global education and immersion in another culture, and is typically coveted by employers upon return to his/her home country.