“Migration and Mobility in Science: Impacts on Cultures and the Profession in Intitutions of Higher Education in Europe” #

AE HERCuLES group event #

Articles from the event published in European Review, Vol. 23, Supplement S1 (Mobility and Migration in Science) - Mai 2015
Event Location: Accademia dei Lincei, Roma (Italy)
Event date: 14th - 16th November, 2013


Professor Alessandro Cavalli (Academia Europaea - Pavia)
Professor Alberto Quadrio Curzio (Accad dei Lincei - Rome)


REGISTRATION IS STILL OPEN - CLICK on this link http://www.acadeuro.org/index.php?id=346

Attention: some travel bursaries (max 250 Euros) are available for young researchers (at post-doc level) to attend and members of the YAE. Contact the London office at admin@acadeuro.org)

There is no registration fee for this event.

Members and non-members of the Academia Europaea are welcome to participate in an international symposium that will address the topical issues surrounding the development of teh Global movement of young scholars adn practicising academics. In particular how these migrations impact on the cultures, status, development and even the very survivability of our European Higer Education insitutions and heritage.

We are pleased that the symposium will be held at the Accademia Lincei in Rome and has been sponsored by The Compagnia di San Paolo.

The proceedings will be published as an open access supplement to the journal of the Academia Europaeea - The European Review.


  • View and download the Programme(info) (26 June 2013)
  • Suggested hotels(info) near the Accad Lincei

A limited number of travel bursaries are available for Young Post doctoral researchers. Please contact the AE coffice for information


Mobility of academics has been ‘frequent’ and scientists considered themselves living in a cosmopolitan world already, when communication and travel across distance could not be realized at ease. Estimates are published according to which one tenth or even more of academics could be viewed as “foreign” or “mobile” according today’s criteria. The development of the nation states in the 19th century created new, often severe barriers, even though the conditions for communication and travel improved. This notwithstanding, ideas moved quickly around the world, and at least in some discipline, search for the most advanced knowledge all over the world became at matter of procedure.

After World War II, international cooperation and mobility of academics spread more rapidly than ever before, even though this was not a regular trend and even though some barriers turned out to be persistent and some even grow. At the beginning of the 21st century, mobility and migration of scholars is held so high in esteem, that some ranking studies even count quotas of foreign scholars and students as indicators of quality per se.

Yet, there are indications that international cooperation and mobility in the academic world is not as undisputedly hailed as many policy statements in this domain suggest:
  • First, even statistical information of international migration, mobility and cooperation is extremely poor if compared to the frequent praise and the wish to provide evidence, whereby wrong or poor data are employed.
  • Major reporting systems on science by supra-national organizations, e.g. UNESCO, OECD and the European Commission, hardly address data of migration and mobility of higher education teachers, researchers or whatever terms of scholars are employed in this context.
  • The discussion on brain gain, brain drain and brain circulation shows that free movement of scholars is in clear tension to the national prerogatives of science and innovation policies irrespective of the rhetoric of a globalised world.
  • Some experts point out that physical migration and mobility of scholars is bound to loose relevance at age of virtual communication.

A closer view reveals that many questions in this domain have remained open and should be responded:
  1. What do we actually know about the magnitude and the flows of migration and mobility? What are the most suitable terms and classification to increase the quality of information in this domain?
  2. How does migration and mobility actually affect the scientific work of scholars and what does this mean for the overall quality and the relevance of systematic knowledge?
  3. To what extent do specific conditions in the various countries and cultures – in Europe and beyond - affect the frequency as well as the value of migration and mobility?
  4. Do we move toward a widening or closing gap of international activities between the various disciplines?
  5. What are balances and imbalances of international cooperation and mobility in academia between countries, as addressed in the debates about brain drain, brain gain and brain circulation?
  6. Where do EU research and higher education policies stimulate international cooperation and mobility unbounded, where is stimulation and encouragement targeted, selective and in some respective non-encouraging? And are there even barriers to cooperation, mobility and migration increasing? What are the rationales of the overall policies in this domain, and what are the consequences?
  7. How can the overall cooperation, mobility and migration policies in the European academic and research world be viewed in a world-wide perspective: as selfish, protective, cosmopolitan, as benchmark for other regions of the world or what else?
Metadata:AE HERCuLES group event

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