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Salient: Victoria University Students' Paper. Vol. 29, No. 14. 1966.

Science - half men are lost

Science - half men are lost

NZSPA Political Reporter

Wellington,—About half of the 151 students who graduated master of science or bachelor of science with honours in physics from 1947 to 1960 have been permanently lost to New Zealand.

This is shown in the annual report of the Royal Society of New Zealand tabled in. Parliament recently.

"With an average of only 12 MSC and Honours BSO graduates in physics a year from the whole university system over the period 1947 to 1960 to meet the requirements of the universities themselves. Government research establishments, science- based industry and the teaching profession the loss of half the number to overseas posts is very serious," the report, says.

A special inquiry was made by the society's mathematics and physics sectional committee.

It found that of 251 students who graduated BSC with physics to stage 3 in 1947-1954. at least one quarter—and probably about one-third— have remained overseas.

Among the physicists with overseas experience who have been employed in New Zealand since 1947. 67 are known to have left and about 57 have remained. Of those who left 75 per cent had masters degrees or higher, and 57 per cent had doctorates.

The committee believes that disparity between salaries in New Zealand and other countries is not the only factor causing physicists to leave.

Other main causes of dissatisfaction include the limited stimulation provided bv small teams and the repeated losses of the best and most stimulating leaders of the groups: the lack of appreciation and status in the community; inadequate provision for participation in conferences overseas, for sabbatical leave and arrangements to attract distinguished scientists or postdoctoral fellows from overseas.

The effect of isolation and import and customs restrictions, and the difficulty in obtaining adequate clerical and technical aid were other causes mentioned.