According to the 2009 ARWU, Joseph Fourier University is the sixth best university in France. Joseph Fourier University is also the 4th best university in Engineering & IT nationally and 115th globally in QS World University Rankings. The origins of this scientific university can be traced all the way back to 1811 when the scientist Joseph Fourier established a faculty of science in Grenoble.
Nowadays more than 18,000 undergraduate and graduate students participate to the life of this university. More than 2,000 are international or exchange students. Joseph Fourier University is not only famous for its alumni but also for its commitment to fundamental as well as applied research and innovation. Part of the university is the Observatoire des Sciences de l'Univers de Grenoble (OSUG), a leading institution in the field of earth, space and environmental sciences.
The main facilities are located on a vast campus east of Grenoble, on the commune of Saint-Martin d'Hères (and partially on that of Gières). This campus is shared with other higher education organizations, see University of Grenoble. The university also has teaching and research installations in the city of Grenoble proper.
The university runs many laboratories, many in association with CNRS, Grenoble-INP and other major institutions.