Students at Tel Aviv University 370.
(photo credit: Danielle Ziri)
Twenty percent of those who received PhDs in math from Israeli higher learning
institutions from 1985 to 2005 had been living abroad for at least three years
as of 2011, according to a survey released this week by the Central Bureau of
The number of graduates from Israeli academia had steadily
increased from 21,000 in 1985 to 106,000 in 2005. The study focused on the
360,000 Israelis who obtained academic degrees during that 20-year
As of 2011, 4.9 percent of them had been living outside of Israel
for three or more years. The percentage of those who left the country is even
higher among those with PhDs – 10.5%. The percentage of those with medical
degrees who left the country as of last year stands at 7.2%.
6.7% of those with medical degrees or PhDs in math and engineering returned to
Among those with bachelor’s degrees, 4.8% of them sought
employment abroad as did 4.2% of those with master’s degrees.
also showed that the percentage of PhDs in scientific fields and in engineering
who lived abroad for over three years is close to four times higher than that of
PhDs in social sciences, and most of those graduated from universities not
Out of the seven Israeli universities, the Weizmann Institute
of Science has the most graduates – 17.8% – going abroad, and Bar-Ilan
University the least – 2.9%.
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The survey also noted that more men than
women seek employment abroad and many immigrants – and Americans in particular –
do as well.
The percentage of those leaving Israel after receiving an
academic degree is also higher among Christians and Jews than Muslim and Druse
According to CBS, the occurrence of brain drain only increases
in the years following students’ graduation from bachelor’s or master’s degree
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