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EMN Inform: Attracting and retaining international researchers

10 May 2022

Researchers from the non-EU countries can provide important expertise and knowledge to European universities and research institutions. The latest inform from the European Migration Network provides an overview of the means adopted by the EU Member States to enhance attractiveness for international researchers. It also describes the main challenges and best practices to admit and retain them.

The inform Attracting and Retaining International Researchers analyses the implementation of the Students and Researchers Directive and relevant national policies, schemes and practices in the EU Member States. It looks at the experiences of the EU Member States in attracting and retaining international researchers, considered as talented and highly qualified workers who can contribute to filling labour market needs. It also deals with the challenges brought by the COVID-19 pandemic in this area.

Most EU Member States address in their policies attracting and retaining international researchers, but the means to do so vary. Member States adopt informational activities to enhance their attractiveness for international researchers, such as leaflets, info days, websites, media campaigns, or missions abroad. The inform also reports bilateral and multilateral cooperation agreements between EU Member States and non-EU countries, aiming to provide funding for joint research projects or the creation of networks of academics.

The inform highlights that EU Member States give international researchers the opportunity to obtain a temporary permit for nine months or more for job search or to set up a business once they have completed their research. Most common challenges that the EU Member States face are bureaucratic obstacles or insufficient attractiveness of the country due to limited research infrastructure and lack of financial support.

This inform maps the legislation, policies, experiences and measures in 22 EU Member States during the period 2018-2020.

EMN Coordinator for Slovakia

International Organization for Migration (IOM) – Office in the Slovak Republic

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EMN Coordinator for the EU

European Comission - Directorate General for Migration and Home Affairs 

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