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EU reaches out to refugee scientists

Over half a million refugees have come to the European Union since the beginning of 2015. Credit: Shutterstock/ Alexandre Rotenberg

European universities will be able to offer jobs directly to refugees who have a scientific background under an employment scheme aimed at helping with Europe’s refugee crisis.

Europe is facing its worst refugee crisis for a generation as hundreds of thousands of people take treacherous journeys to Europe to escape war in countries such as Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq.

‘The launch of Science4Refugees is a very exciting example of how Europe's scientific community can be truly open to the world.’ 

Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation

Under the EU’s new scheme, called Science4Refugees, universities can use the EU’s research employment portal EURAXESS to flag jobs, internships and training courses as being specifically open to refugees, while refugees with science training can upload their CVs into the system.

‘This is just one example of how we can show true solidarity to refugees and asylum seekers in the European Union,’ Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, said in a statement released to mark the launch of the initiative.

‘The launch of Science4Refugees is a very exciting example of how Europe's scientific community can be truly open to the world,’ he said.

Commissioner Moedas presented Science4Refugees at a meeting of G7 science ministers in Berlin on 9 October.

As it evolves, EURAXESS, which has more than 250 centres around Europe, will also start offering language and integration courses to help refugees settle into the host country.

The EU agreed in September to relocate 120 000 refugees who have entered the border states of Italy, Greece and Hungary as part of the European Agenda on Migration.

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