Greece rich in doctoral graduates but lags in keeping them at home

5 April 2016
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Over 35,400 students at Greek universities went on to attain a PhD in the 1990-2013 period, but 21.2 percent had imminent plans to leave the country for a better job in 2015 and 17 percent were thinking about looking for employment elsewhere, a recent report by the National Documentation Center has found.

The report on higher degree holders and their career prospects, conducted as part of an 22-country study by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), found that while Greece ranked 9th among the participants in the number of PhD holders at 7.3 per 1,000 of the economically active population, it had the highest rate of unemployed doctoral graduates at 3.5 percent, with that ratio rising to 12.2 percent among under-35-year-olds. Also, the percentage of unemployed women with a PhD was higher at 4.3 percent than that of men (3 pct).

The average age for acquiring a PhD in Greece stood at 38 years old, above the mean age among the 22 countries (31 in Switzerland and 41 in Malta), while most of the degrees (86.2 pct) were attained at Greek universities. Another 11.2 percent acquired their degree in another European Union country (with the UK, France and Germany being the more popular choices) and 2.4 percent studied in the USA.

Furthermore, 23.6 percent of doctoral graduates in Greece financed their degrees from their own savings or with the help of their families, 23.1 percent had scholarships, 21.5 percent worked in unrelated jobs and just 17.4 percent had jobs as teaching or research assistants.

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