A scientist looks through a microscope.
(photo credit: INGIMAGE)
A record number of 3,240 Israeli researchers and scientists who live abroad have registered with the Israel Academy of Sciences’ center for help in returning home, the academy said on Monday.
The Jerusalem-based academy is holding a job fair on Thursday where those who left and are now visiting can explore possibilities for jobs upon their return.
Hundreds of them are expected to meet representatives of the universities, colleges and private companies, said Prof. Nili Cohen, the president of the academy, who will host the guests.
The center was founded in 2007 to fight the “brain drain” of scientists and other academics abroad. Since then, over 700 returnees – most from the US, Canada and Europe – have been hired by Israeli universities and colleges. A total of 505 have become tenured faculty members, 76 of them in the last year. Others returned as post-doctoral students and lab managers.
Of the 3,240 who are currently registered, 2,380 have doctors and the rest are PhD candidates.
According to surveys conducted by the academy’s center, most of the emigrant scientists and researchers are held back from returning by the red tape and “lack of transparency” in employment terms and the worry that they will not find permanent jobs. The longer they live abroad, the more concerned they are, thus the center’s professionals say that being in touch with them raises their confidence about returning.
A third of those registered are in the life science and medicine field, a third in the exact sciences and engineering and the rest in the humanities and social sciences.
The fair will open at noon in the academy building, 43 Jabotinsky Street and the adjacent Van Leer Jerusalem Institute. It is expected to be the academy’s largest-ever employment fair so far, with 33 stands of academic institutions and 20 companies including IBM, Motorola, Teva, Oracle, Intel and the Israel Aircraft Industries.
Lectures by company leaders and academics will begin at 4 p.m.