In a world in which research is carried out on a truly global basis, collaboration and mobility are a key part of the business of science. International mobility ensures a circulation of skills and ideas around the world, and ‘brain circulation’ in the global research system sees scientists follow the best science and the best resources. The UK is a hub for excellent science with a truly international workforce; 29% of the UK academic workforce is from overseas, as are over half of PhD students.
The Society is working to deepen understanding of when, where and why researchers move, as well as how this impacts on their science and their careers. In May 2017, we published new research and case studies (see Rolodex below) that together present an up-to-date picture of international researcher mobility to and from the UK, to the EU and beyond.
The Society will continue to be active on international researcher mobility. This is part of our work to ensure the health of UK science and innovation and to support the UK in its broader role in international science. It is crucial that government policies support the UK to attract the talent it needs from overseas, as well as enabling UK scientists to travel abroad. This work is particularly timely in the context of the Society’s broader work to ensure the best possible outcome of Brexit, as arrangements for the movement of researchers to and from the UK could change.