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Israel Conducts Study on Its Students and Professionals in U.S.

The Israeli Government has conducted a survey in the United States to determine the reasons for the “brain drain” of professionals and students who work or study in the United States, and to encourage them to return to Israel, it was disclosed here today.

Special offices to aid the return of the trained Israelis to Israel, where they could contribute to the country’s development, have been established in New York and Los Angeles, with a branch in Tel. Aviv aiding the project by arranging jobs, homes and other facilities for the returnees.

Some results of the survey were revealed today by Abraham Ben-Zip, American representative of the Israeli Ministry of Labor, who is in overall charge of the project, with an office in New York.

He said he has found that there are 2,000 Israeli students in the United States, of whom the majority, 1,100, are graduate students or men and women engaged in post-doctoral studies. In addition, 1,500 Israelis are in this country, having completed their studies and working here in various professional pursuits. Among the latter, 40 percent are engineers, 10-15 percent are physicians, and 20 percent are scientists, artists and social scientists.

There are also about 1,000 other Israelis in this country who have completed their studies but, for various reasons, have not replied to questionnaires sent out by his New York office, Mr. Ben-Zip said. While the latter group may include many Israelis who have no intention to return to Israel, the majority of the 1,500 Israeli professionals working in the United States indicated by their answers to the questionnaires that they do plan to go back to Israel. Of the total of those 1,500, all but about 15 percent have retained their Israeli citizenships, Mr. Ben-Zip stated.

He disclosed also that a study attempting to trace the motivations for continued or permanent residence in this country by both students and professionals was launched by the Israel Government. The study is now being conducted by the Bureau of Applied Social Research of Columbia University. He said that the United States Government has underwritten this project, believing that the study may bring out motivational information relating, in general, to the researches into reasons why various countries are threatened by “brain drain.”

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