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Fears rise about shortage of researchers

The Swiss National Science Foundation says there are increasing indications that the country may experience a lack of young academics in the medium term.

This content was published on May 18, 2009 - 11:42

As a result, the Foundation said on Monday it intended to boost funding to young researchers as a priority.

It noted that as Switzerland was an attractive place to carry out research, universities repeatedly succeeded in employing both top researchers and academics from abroad.

But young Swiss academics were "few and far between" in many sectors, it said.

A study commissioned by the Foundation also showed that young women left academic life because of the difficulty of reconciling an academic career with a family, and because they received less career support from professors.

The Foundation described researchers in Switzerland as "very productive", submitting a record 3,439 independent research projects in 2008.

It allocated more than SFr660 million ($586.7 million) in funding to projects.

In 2008, a total of 22 per cent of approved funding was awarded in the humanities and social sciences, 36 per cent in mathematic, natural and engineering sciences and 42 per cent in biology and medicine.

swissinfo.ch with agencies

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