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Europe rails against brain drain

London, Dec. 11 (Reuters): Europe’s leading scientists criticised the EU’s science policies yesterday, calling for reforms and more funding to curb further brain drain to the US.

“It is important to realise that the US is dramatically more successful than the EU in attracting young talents at the post-doc (post-doctoral) level from all parts of the world,” the presidents of 10 European science academies said in a letter to the European Council of EU leaders.

The letter, obtained by Reuters, was signed by Lord May of Oxford, president of Britain’s Royal Society; Hubert Curien, president of France’s L’Academie des Sciences; and Janne Carlsson, president of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.

It was sent to the current EU president, Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen, before a December 12-13 EU summit in Copenhagen. The letter urges a summit debate on how the EU could become more competitive and stem the outflow of its scientists.

It said more funding and reforms were needed beyond current goals to reduce a widening gap in research and development spending between the EU and other members of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

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