One out of three international PhD students stays in the Netherlands

One third of the international PhD students is still in the Netherlands ten years later, this is estimated by the Dutch Central Planning Office (CPB). Engineers stay more often than other scientists.
Hoger Onderwijs Persbureau

Illustration: Henk

van Ruitenbeek

It is not more than an estimation the CPB warns, but it thinks that 32 percent of the international PhD students is still in the Netherlands ten years later. Some groups seem less fond of travelling than others: women, but also engineers and scientists from less wealthy countries are relatively more attached.

Especially East Europeans and Asians stay in the Netherlands. Almost all North Americans leave.

Back home

About half of the international PhD students that leave the Netherlands return home. The other half frequently move to Germany, the United States and the United Kingdom. Dutch PhD students have a similar preference, but in a different order.

The amount of international PhD students at the Dutch universities has grown. The government views this as a positive trend, because internationalisation is important for higher education. But, the aim is that their expensive study helps the Dutch economy grow. Even if it is just by tax revenues.

The CPB was only able to use the data from PhD students who are employed by Dutch Universities. This is about half of the total PhD students. Data on the PhD students at university medical centres and at other institutions are missing in this research.

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