Iranian media report that close to 62 percent of Iran’s academic elite have left Iran to pursue their education at top foreign universities.
The Shargh Newspaper reported on the brain drain today, saying 94 percent of the Iranian students now pursuing post-graduate degrees at prestigious universities around the world received their bachelor’s degree from Iran’s top university, Sanati Sharif.
The reports adds that between 1993 and 2007, 225 Iranian students participated in world Olympiads in mathematics, physics, chemistry and computer science. Of these 225, 140 are currently studying at top U.S. and Canadian universities.
Some of the computer science Olympiad champions have leading roles in Google’s and Microsoft’s research teams.
A report by the International Monetary Fund in 2009 indicated that Iran tops the list of countries losing their academic elite, with an annual loss of 150,000 to 180,000 specialists. It’s equivalent to a capital loss of $50 billion.