International mobility: Findings from a survey of researchers in the EU
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Original versionScience and Public Policy 2015:1-16 10.1093/scipol/scv006
International mobility of researchers is increasingly constructed both as a science policy problem to be solved and as a goal to be pursued. Yet evidence on the experience of mobility and the factors associated with propensity to mobility remains patchy. We analyse comprehensive survey data on the mobility experience of university and non-university research institute researchers in the EU. Our results both confirm and challenge assertions about mobility made in the literature and in policy debates. We find that 57% of university respondents and 65% of institute respondents have experienced international mobility at least once in their research careers. We find that research visits are the most commonly experienced form of international mobility but that job migration (cross-country changes of employer) is also surprisingly common. International student mobility, and also industrial placement experience, seems to be a good predictor of subsequent mobility during the research career.