Facts and figures: Mobility in higher education

From the UNESCO Science Report, Towards 2030

The number of international students rose from 2.8 million to 4.1 million between 2005 and 2013.

As of 2012, five countries had more than 10 000 of their doctoral students living abroad: China (58 492), India (30 291), Germany (13 606), Iran (12 180) and the Republic of Korea (11 925). Ten others had more than 4 000 (Italy, Canada, USA, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, France, Viet Nam, Turkey, Pakistan, Brazil), offering a strong impetus for future international scientific co-operation.

Just ten countries host 89% of internationally mobile doctoral students in science or engineering fields. The USA alone hosts practically half of these (49.1% on 2012). It is followed by the UK (9.2%), France (7.4%), Australia (4.6%), Canada (3.9%), Germany (3.5%), Switzerland (3.1%), Japan (2.9%), Malaysia (2.9%) and Sweden (2.0%).

As of 2012, 29% of international PhD students were completing a degree in a field of natural sciences, as opposed to 13% at bachelor’s or master’s levels. In engineering, manufacturing and construction, the corresponding shares were 24% and 16% respectively.

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