Iran fighting brain drain through foreign co-op
Tehran, Iran, March 9
By Mehdi Sepahvand - Trend:
Iran is fighting brain drain through cooperation with foreign universities and educational centers in a bid to preserve the country's human resources, according to Amir Golroo, assistant professor at Department of Civil & Enviromental Engineering of Iran's Amirkabir University of Technology.
"We promote brain gain," he said."Rather than having Iranian students receive their degrees abroad through full programs, we provide them with opportunity to receive international education experience," he told Trend March 9.
Golroo said Iran has specific 2+2 programs that have Iranian doctorate students spend two years studying in Iran, then two years abroad to complete their course, as well as 1+1 programs for graduate students.
"In both of these programs, a student has to return to Iran to defend his/her thesis in order to receive a degree," Golroo explained.
Amirkabir University has also started conducting students and professors exchange, joint workshops, and joint seminars in order to engage in more international experiences, he added.
Iran has been recently freed from international sanctions under a comprehensive agreement with world powers called the JCPOA. Under the sanctions, scientific and technological cooperation with Iran were also forbidden. But in the post-sanctions era, Iranian universities have found new hopes of international experiences.
Golroo explained that since the start of the current Iranian calendar year (starts on March 21), the Amirkabir University has arranged eight 2+2 programs, signed five contracts on student exchange, and planned 20 international internship courses.
"There is no concern regarding education quality inside the country. The concern is rather about lab equipment and such things. So, we give our students the opportunity to work abroad for a short term to partially carry out their projects at a university abroad," he said.
Iran has suffered high degrees of brain drain in the past, as many talented students ended up in Western universities, further deciding to stay, after finishing their education.
Top Iranian universities such as Amirkabir University of Technology, Sharif University of Technology, University of Tehran, and Shahid Beheshti University have been the source of much educated talent heading abroad and flourishing as great scientific figures there.