BBC radio programme highlights survey on researcher mobility

BBC World Service - Science in Action podcast

26 October 2018

Sue Guthrie spoke to the BBC World Service "Science in Action" programme on Thursday, 25 October, about a recent RAND Europe survey on the international movement of researchers.

The weekly radio programme focused on why the free movement of researchers is so crucial, after recent news that 29 Nobel laureates wrote a letter to Theresa May and Jean-Claude Juncker saying a hard Brexit could cripple UK science.

Research leader Guthrie detailed some of the key findings of the survey which was commissioned by the Together Science Can campaign.

"Ninety-six per cent of respondents said that [the ability to travel overseas] is a crucial part of science, that it is integral to science," she said. "It can be moving abroad for research position, but it can also be shorter term visits to attend conferences, meet with collaborators, participate in workshops."

The aim of the study was to gather information from researchers on their experiences of international travel and relocation in order to better understand the factors that can help or hinder their movement.

Also discussing the topic were Sir Paul Nurse, the British geneticist who won his Nobel for pioneering work on cancer therapy and tumour diagnosis, and the biologist Venki Ramakrishnan, president of the Royal Society.

Listen to the programme