Top Banner
1 International scientific migrations Tunisian Expert Aboard: a Greater Contribution to National Development Belgacem Henchi Brain drain or migration of experts, exodus or exile happens when a “ community loses its intellectual human resources to the advantage of another ”. There can be other types of losses such as muscle drain (athletes), labor drain (blue collar workers) or talent drain (artists). Missionaries working with organized cooperation are not taken into account because, although- being a provisional “ loss ”, they follow State policies. Stays abroad for studies or assistant- ships are not taken into account either, nor are institutional personnel exchanges. The population of “ Exiled experts ” has its dynamic character with its own growth laws. It depends, first, on the general context of the country of origin (socio-political and economic situation) ; then, particularly, on the development of science and, last, on the extent migrants have settled down in the host country. 1. The universal character of science and technology makes intellectuals, in general, and scien- tists, in particular, think that they can emigrate any time to places where, as they are useful to the greatest possible extent, they can feel achievement. It has clearly been determined that, except for medical professions, scientists rarely leave their countries due to financial reasons. Most of the time they do it because of : - isolation ; - lack of specialists colleagues with whom they can exchange ideas ; - lack of infrastructure, literature and reception structures. These reasons are usually linked to the lack of resources, but also to the absence of a critical mass of experts in increasingly diverse fields of knowledge. 2. Furthermore, for an expert it is essential to see, at the end of the chain, the result of his effort and to obtain recognition and honor. Besides, for a production apparatus, in order to achieve and maintain competitive performances, it is also essential to know how to draw and to keep the generosity of the creators of such performances. A good understanding of this intersection of mutual interests seems to be the main source of satisfaction for both. The feeling of being part of a successful process, gives a sense of responsibility and sharpens creativity. Additionally, it encourages integration of everybody, regardless of the creed or the political ten- dency, in the construction of development. All these conditions are absent in our country, as they are in all Southern countries, and, as a result, virtually all our national experts are becoming exiles from a system that takes very little advantage of their potentialities. International context. A bad souvenir for the North Europe has suffered from a massive brain transfer, particularly during and after the World Wars, to the advantage of the new world, that is North America. As Lord Bowden (UK) stated, “ If we capitalized what are worth those who, since the war, have left the British Isles to go to America,
15

International scientific migrations Tunisian Expert …horizon.documentation.ird.fr/exl-doc/pleins_textes/divers4/... · International scientific migrations Tunisian Expert Aboard:

Mar 05, 2018

Download

Documents

hoangngoc
Welcome message from author
This document is posted to help you gain knowledge. Please leave a comment to let me know what you think about it! Share it to your friends and learn new things together.
Transcript
  • 1

    International scientific migrations

    Tunisian Expert Aboard: a GreaterContribution to National Development

    Belgacem Henchi

    Brain drain or migration of experts, exodus or exile happens when a community loses itsintellectual human resources to the advantage of another . There can be other types of lossessuch as muscle drain (athletes), labor drain (blue collar workers) or talent drain (artists).Missionaries working with organized cooperation are not taken into account because, although-being a provisional loss , they follow State policies. Stays abroad for studies or assistant-ships are not taken into account either, nor are institutional personnel exchanges.

    The population of Exiled experts has its dynamic character with its own growth laws. Itdepends, first, on the general context of the country of origin (socio-political and economicsituation) ; then, particularly, on the development of science and, last, on the extent migrantshave settled down in the host country.

    1. The universal character of science and technology makes intellectuals, in general, and scien-tists, in particular, think that they can emigrate any time to places where, as they are useful tothe greatest possible extent, they can feel achievement. It has clearly been determined that,except for medical professions, scientists rarely leave their countries due to financial reasons.Most of the time they do it because of :

    - isolation ;- lack of specialists colleagues with whom they can exchange ideas ;- lack of infrastructure, literature and reception structures.

    These reasons are usually linked to the lack of resources, but also to the absence of a criticalmass of experts in increasingly diverse fields of knowledge.

    2. Furthermore, for an expert it is essential to see, at the end of the chain, the result of his effortand to obtain recognition and honor. Besides, for a production apparatus, in order to achieveand maintain competitive performances, it is also essential to know how to draw and to keepthe generosity of the creators of such performances. A good understanding of this intersectionof mutual interests seems to be the main source of satisfaction for both. The feeling of beingpart of a successful process, gives a sense of responsibility and sharpens creativity.Additionally, it encourages integration of everybody, regardless of the creed or the political ten-dency, in the construction of development.

    All these conditions are absent in our country, as they are in all Southern countries, and, as aresult, virtually all our national experts are becoming exiles from a system that takes very littleadvantage of their potentialities.

    International context. A bad souvenir for the North

    Europe has suffered from a massive brain transfer, particularly during and after the World Wars,to the advantage of the new world, that is North America. As Lord Bowden (UK) stated, If wecapitalized what are worth those who, since the war, have left the British Isles to go to America,

    StatusSecrtariat dEtat la Recherche scientifique et la Technologie de Tunisie, Tunisia.

  • 2

    International scientific migrations Tunisian experts abroad

    we would have paid, by far, the Marshall plan . Today, this hemorrhage is nothing but a badmemory and despite the fact that brain mobility between Northern countries still exists and is evenencouraged by international competition, it does not affect any more this countries StrategicReserves ; they have, indeed, a number of engineers and scientists per million of inhabitants 15to 20 times greater than the number in the developing countries have (table 1).

    It is true that some Northern countries have an important migratory flow of top-level migrants,to the advantage of more powerful neighbors ; nevertheless, they are not excessively affecteddue to the compensatory flow of immigrants (from the South and elsewhere) of the same qua-lity, whose transfer and settling down are practically organized by the host country. It could beuseful to mention the example of Canada ; only in the province of Quebec, 34 % of all univer-sity teachers are foreigners and in the whole country the rate mounts to 45 % ; Canada spendsan average of Canadian $ 250.000 to train a teacher ; once he is operational, he generates 20highly-qualified jobs (hence highly well paid). This is a clear example of the extent of the lossof one of these groups and the gain of the other (operational teachers and establishment ofhighly technical jobs).

    Table 1. Average expenses in R&D (% GNP) and number of scientists and enginners, per millon of inhabitants

    * Number of countries being consideredSource : UNESCO Statistical Yearbook 1989

    A syndrome for the South

    For many Asian and African countries, exile has become a massive exodus that endangers thesecountriescapacities to care for themselves and to train the newly arrived generations. Africahas already lost one third of its experts to the advantage of Europe. Only in 1978, 17 % ofSudans doctors and dentists, 30 % of its engineers and 20 % of its university teachers have leftthe country. The situation in the Mahgreb region is not any better : the quoted rates of nonreturn, after studies or assistantships abroad, are not really exaggerated (80 % for Tunisia and60 % for Morocco).

    This situation can only worsen in an international context where economic competition, bet-ween the winners of the cold war, for political leadership is one of the most tangible new rea-lities. A considerable pressure is being exerted on the Knowledge and Technology market, atthe disadvantage, no doubt, of Southern countries. These are all the more threatened becausethey do little efforts to preserve their Human Capital by offering them minimal conditions ofdevelopment and work.

    R&D %GNP S&E/MILLION of inhbts

    Industrialized countries 2.48 2 792USA 2.8 3 233Japan 2.8 4 836European countries 2.04(9)* 1 111 (19)*France 2.3 1 888Former FRG 2.7 2 382Sweden 3 2 537England 2.3 no dataIsrael 3.7 4 836Former Socialist countires 4.7(8)* 4 276 (8)*Former USSR 5.5 5 414Developing countries 0.46(59)* 0 195 (39)*

  • 3

    International scientific migrations Tunisian experts abroad

    The Tunisian case

    Evolution of the Tunisian school system

    Since the education reform, undertaken in 1958, right after the independence, Tunisian schoolsystem has been placed in a dynamic and evolving perspective that follows basic principles andoptions :

    - democratization and generalization of teaching ;- access to development through mans progress ;- opening towards modern culture and will to enter to the technological civilization.

    The essential mission of the Ministry of National Education is to allow all children, regardlessof their race, religion or social background, to have access to education and teaching. TheMinistry guarantees, from the beginning, that all children will have the same opportunities bothfor entering the various branches of education and for fulfilling their studies, with no limitother than their own efforts and merits. As for the Ministry of Higher Education, its essentialmission is, on the one hand, the training of experts whose competence is useful for the coun-trys economic and social development and, on the other hand, the training on and throughresearch. Access to higher education is a right that every high school graduate has in Tunisia.Selection of the branch students undertake depends both on the studentsaptitudes and thecountrys development needs.

    A study on the evolution of the education system since the independence until 1980 shows(Table 2) that primary and secondarv education have evolved more rapidly than higher educa-tion ; the latter has remained in a traditional, classical stage. Accordingly, the universitys capa-city to receive students remained limited and new specialties were practically absent. In orderto encourage students and to guarantee a minimum of higher education in certain top-levelbranches, since independence and up to 1987, the State selected the best high school graduatesand sent them abroad, particularly to Europe and to America (Canada and the USA) to pursuetheir education.Since political change in Tunisia, in 1987, there was an awareness of the pro-blem engendered by this organized sending abroad Tunisian experts ; among the urgent mea-sures that were taken we mention the following :

    - reform of high school and university education so as to adapt one to the other ;- training, within the country, of hundreds of specialists who were formerly trained in foreignuniversities ;- granting of post graduate scholarships for those who wish to pursue their education within thecountry and limitation of scholarships abroad ;- improvement of scientific equipment of specialty laboratories ;- improving the teachers/students ratio at all levels of university education.

    Primary education Secondary education Higher education

    Years numbers of Number of Number of Number of Number of Number of Number of Number of Number of schools students primary high schools students high schools universities students university

    teachers teachers techers

    1955/56 729 209 348 5 125 59 31 095 1 212 5 2 268

    1960/61 1108 408 758 7128 67 40 317 2 015 8 2 564 185

    1970/71 2208 922 861 18 465 152 179 527 6 883 13 10 768 1 004

    1980/81 2613 1 045 011 26 989 236 275 133 12 629 55 31 827 2 333

    1990/91 3841 1 398 119 50 280 585 496 840 24 474 77 68 535 4 550

    1995/96 4349 1 460 101 59 432 760 725 926 30 170 89 112 634 6 481

    Table 2. Evolution of Tunisian education system since Independence (1956-1996)

  • 4

    International scientific migrations Tunisian experts abroad

    Migration of Tunisian experts

    Up to 1980, a massive return of exiled experts allowed the access of Tunisians to directive-level posts ; afterwards, these returns decreased significantly, due to national limitations and tothe pressure of attractive offers coming from the host countries. Among those national limita-tions we may mention the following :

    - Tunisians lack of information and contact with the foreign world ; in fact, up to these pastyears, Tunisia was disconnected from the almost unlimited mass of knowledge that circulatesaround the world through the networks ; thanks to the education-abroad policy, the lite of ouryouth was sent to the developed countries at a highly risked age (18 years). This policy was notcomplemented with appropriate structures to integrate the specialties being acquired (nuclearscience, aeronautics, microelectronics, etc.) and to stimulate the exilesreturn. The establish-ment of the so called Excellence establishments will not do anything but delaying these returns,since the above-mentioned structures are still absent. Furthermore, due to the inadequacy of theuniversity recruitment system, it is impossible to expect the return of reputed experts, nor ofyoung graduates or post graduates, since the systems or equivalencies is unfair and favors anout-of-date standard.- Socio-economic policy : every day life is characterized by poverty of performance and scar-city of resources which are often due to disorganization and lack of management. With thepressure of this reality, priorities that are actually transitory and artificial appear. Decisions andactions are not longer based in the long term of a previously drawn strategy and do not use top-level experts contribution ; these experts feel out of place in an economy where, in generalterms, only the immediate, risk free results count.

    In a parallel manner, host countries have not facilitated the return of these exiled experts ; onthe contrary, they have attracted them by all means, offering them advantages even greater thanthose offered to their own nationals. It has been found that certain universities or research cen-ters have done everything to retain the best exiles. They have gone as far as avoiding domes-tic regulations in force, concerning exile residence permits, so as to take advantage of theseexilesscientific contribution. Hence, the existence of opulent political regimesseduction isevident and its influence in the choice of exile is subjacent.

    Nevertheless, exiles are not so much attracted by democracy and human rights ; in the Northcountries, these seem to be sacrificed under the vital interests of their pretended defenders ;what really attracts the exiles is the tolerant, permissive society of individual freedom, a societythat believes also in individuals and in their initiatives for progress.

    The solutions

    Since 1987s political change, before this hemorrhage of experts and its impact on the coun-trys economy, a series of measures were taken ; they aimed at, both in the short and in the longrun, establishing an infrastructure to receive exiles and an appropriate environment that allows,to the greatest possible extent, the recovering of exiled experts and the cooperation with thoseremaining abroad. Among these measures we can mention the following :

    Institutional measures

    a) Establishment of the State Secretariat for Scientific Research and Technology whose mainmission is :

  • 5

    International scientific migrations Tunisian experts abroad

    - development of our countrys capacity to take advantage of the economic benefits of scienti-fic and technical progress ;- increase of national scientific potential in all fields.

    b) Establishment of large schools such as the Polytechnic School and the National Institute forApplied Sciences and Technology, whose aims are to limit schooling abroad and to diminishdepartures from the country at a relatively critical age.

    c) Development of existing Research Centers. Several Research Centers and Institutes weresubjected to assessment and restructuring so as to enhance their human and material resources.

    d) Establishment of specialized centers. It was found that scientific migration concerns mostlyadvanced technologies and highly advanced specialties. In order to limit these drains and havethe country benefit from science progress, several specialized centers were founded, such asthe Biotechnology Center at Sfax, the Nuclear Sciences and Technology Center, the NationalTeledetection Center, and the Institute for Research and Physicochemical Analysis.

    Direct actions

    In a parallel way to these long-term-effect measures, short-term and medium-term actions wereundertaken in order to have the country profit of exiled experts. Every exile was involved inResearch and Development actions in his own field and contacts between them and their homo-logues in our country were encouraged. Among the most significant actions we can mentionthe following :

    Creation of databases

    A bank of science and technology experts was implemented ; through this data bank the infor-mation concerning those experts is gathered in a repertory ; this allows the identification of theirsectors of activity and facilitates the cooperation between them and domestic laboratories.Another data bank gathered the information concerning technical staff working in bilateral orinternational cooperation (Table 3) ; this has allowed a census of this executives and their classi-fication, according to their specialty, by region, country or international or regional organization.These exported executives have the role of publicizing Tunisian know-how and hence facilitatethe recruitment, in the host countries, of young Tunisian experts looking for a job abroad.

    Tokten program

    It is a program of knowledge transfer through the expatriated nationals. It has been designed inthe framework of cooperation with PNUD. By way of this program, Tunisian expatriatedexperts provide a direct scientific and professional contribution to different development sec-tors of the country, through brief consultation not involving total participation or throughimplementation or organization of seminars and technical workshops. This type of transfer oftechnology and know-how is greatly facilitated by factors such as culture and language iden-tity, attachment to the fatherland and will to cooperate. The Tokten program is addressed tonational expatriated experts (consultants, specialists, professors and researchers) with a highly-qualified know-how and appropriated professional experience that may contribute, in differentways, to national development efforts in all sectors of development, particularly those relatedto science and technology.

    Legal framework

    The main priorities of national policy are : mastery of technology, education through and forresearch in different disciplines, support to applied research in priority sectors and dissemina-

  • 6

    International scientific migrations Tunisian experts abroad

    tion of scientific culture within the Tunisian society. In order to achieve these goals, a globalreform of the research system was undertaken in 1992 and ended in 1996 by the enactment ofa law on research policy and technological development ; two articles of the law, out of 22,were dedicated to forms of cooperation with Tunisian experts abroad.

    In fact, article 19, provides for special advantages for Tunisian researchers abroad when they areinvited to assume a research direction or to take part in research projects of national priority. Asfor article 20, it encourages research and teaching institutions to invite Tunisian researchers wor-king abroad to undertake common research projects. The law and the decrees that organizehigher education go in the same direction ; in fact, they offer Tunisian researchers and teachersworking abroad a series of contribution possibilities in research and higher education activitiesin Tunisia. For these purposes, these texts provide for different types of participation such as :

    - visiting teacher-researcher (for universities) ;- associated teacher-researcher (non university related) ;- bilateral or multilateral cooperation agreements between resident Tunisian researchers tea-chers and their compatriots living abroad ;- common tutorships of young Tunisian researchers enrolled abroad and of those working inTunisian universities.

    Furthermore, two university missions have been established abroad : one in Paris (for Europe),and the other in Montreal (for America) ; their role is to act as tutors for Tunisian experts abroadand to ensure a connection with their homologues in Tunisia in the corresponding specialties.

    Courses and conferences

    For some specialized branches, when Tunisian universities and research institutes lack ofexperts, priority is given, whenever possible, to cooperation with Tunisians abroad ; in suchcases, stay expenses are figured out in an advantageous manner in relation to the number ofhours taught per week, and in proportion to the salary of a full-time local professor.

    Associations of Tunisian researchers living abroad

    The establishment of scientific associations constitutes a framework for gathering Tunisiansliving abroad. This is due to the fact that these associations function, basically, on a voluntarybasis and that most of Tunisians abroad enroll in them, specially in large cities where theTunisian community is relatively well represented. Six associations have already been identi-fied, as follows :

    - 3 in the USA : Tunisian Scientific Society (TSS), Arab Scientist ans Technologists abroad,Tunisian Scientific Consortium ;- 2 in France : Association des Chercheurs et enseignants Tunisiens en France, Association desjeunes chercheurs et universitaires Maghgrebins en France ;- 1 in Canada : Tunisian Scientific Society.

    These associations have largely contributed to a better identification of Tunisian experts wor-king abroad. As a result of this dynamism, a consortium of associations (RSC) has been esta-blished ; it gathers researchers working in various countries and meets regularly in order toguarantee a closer cooperation.

    Congress and Seminars

    Nearly every year, most of the above-mentioned associations, in cooperation with concernednational organisms, organize meetings gathering their affiliates in the country in question.Likewise, the National Bureau of Tunisians Abroad organizes seminars and colloquiums ; thelast one, held from April 19 to 20, 1996, on Tunisian Experts Contribution to theDevelopment Process , gathered Tunisians coming from 11 countries (France, Italy,Switzerland, Sweden, Germany, Canada, USA, Belgium, Austria, Morocco and Mauritania).

  • 7

    International scientific migrations Tunisian experts abroad

    Research program (the joint project program)

    In the view of enhancing relations of Tunisian researchers living abroad, particularly those inUSA and Canada, with their homologues in Tunisia, a program of research has been launchedby the State Secretariat for Scientific Research. It aims at undertaking joint research programsby Tunisians working at institutions in different countries. This program seeks transferringadvanced technology and introducing new specialties in the country so as to guarantee a mini-mum know-how and the local development of new branches of knowledge with little repre-sentation in the country up to the present. The program covers : engineering sciences, such asenergy sciences, computing sciences, telecommunications and industry engineering ; mathe-matics, physics and natural sciences ; agriculture, and health. Besides, it facilitates the trave-ling of researchers between the two laboratories and provides for a better integration of thecountry in the new axes of Research and Development.

    Conclusions

    At the time of the global village, characterized by the importance of knowledge and the circu-lation of information, expert drain does not have the same effects on the emigration countriesthan it had before. It is now possible, even necessary, to take advantage of these experts, fromtheir very country of origin, so as to achieve technology transfer, subject today to severecontrols. Tunisia, a country that belongs to the Mediterranean basin, to the Arabo-muslimworld and to African land has contributed throughout its history to the enrichment of universalknowledge, thanks to eminent personalities ; the great sociologist Ibn Khaldoun and the famousphysician Ibn Jazzar are mere examples of successful migrations both for Tunisia and for thewhole world. Exploitation of these Tunisian experts currently abroad has become eveneasier thanks to the Progress of communications technology. After political change in 1987,these scientific ambassadors of Tunisia are accredited by their country to work in host coun-tries and have Tunisia take advantage of the progress engendered by their research activity.

    Middle North African International Other TOTALEast Africa countries Organizations countries

    Education 2 726 100 44 28 114 2 984Health 2 099 23 1 16 34 2 157Administration 205 4 6 135 31 246Transport and 254 31 20 274telecomunicationPublic works 176 10 11 15 9 206Electricity and mechanics 798 53 1 8 27 879Agriculture 67 13 3 64 5 87

    Other branches 309 3 6 40 29 347

    TOTAL 6 634 206 72 337 268 7 180

    Table 3. Tunisian Working in Cooperation Programs Abroad

    Distribution for activities Distribution for geographic region

  • Migrations scientifiques internationales

    1

    Experts tunisiens ltranger :une plus grande contribution au dveloppement national

    Belgacem Henchi

    Introduction

    La migration, exode, exil ou fuite des cerveaux (ou comptences) se produit lorsquune com-munaut perd ses ressources humaines intellectuelles au profit dune autre .

    Dautres pertes peuvent inclure lexil des muscles (athltes), des forces de travail (cols bleus),ou des talents (artistes). Bien quils constituent une perte provisoire, les missionnaire, dela coopration organise ne sont pas comptabiliss puisquils servent les desseins de la poli-tique de ltat. Ne sont pas compts non plus les sjours pour formation (tudes, stages) ouchanges dans un cadre institutionnel.

    La population des comptences en exil est caractre dynamique, possdant ses propreslois de croissance. Elle est dabord tributaire du contexte gnral du pays d origine en gnral(socio-politique, conomique) et de lpanouissement de la science en particulier puis du degrdenracinement dans le pays daccueil.

    a) Le caractre universel de la science et de la technologie a gnr un sentiment persistantchez lintellectuel en gnral et le scientifique en particulier de pouvoir migrer tout momentl o il aura la satisfaction dtre pleinement utile.

    A cet effet, il a t clairement tabli que, hormis les professions mdicales, les scientifiquesquittent rarement leur pays dorigine pour des raisons financires. Ils le font presque toujours cause de :

    - lisolement ;- labsence des collgues spcialistes avec qui ils changent les ides ;- labsence dinfrastructures, de littrature et de structures daccueil.

    Celle-ci tant gnralement lie au manque de moyens mais aussi labsence de masse cri-tique en experts dans des domaines de plus en plus varis de la connaissance.

    b) Il est, par ailleurs, capital pour une comptence de voir le rsultat de son effort apparatreen bout de chane puis reconnu et donc honor. Dun autre ct, il est tout aussi capital pourun appareil de production, pour atteindre et maintenir des performances comptitives, desavoir susciter et entretenir la gnrosit de ses crateurs. Cette intersection dintrts mutuelsbien compris semble tre la source principale de lpanouissement des uns et des autres. Cesentiment de participer une uvre qui aboutit responsabilise et aiguise la crativit. Il favo-rise de mme lintgration de tous, abstraction faite des croyances ou de la couleur politiquedans lopration du dveloppement.

    c) Labsence de ces mcanismes dans notre pays, comme dans tous les pays du Sud, nest pasloin de faire de toutes nos comptences nationales des exils par rapports un systme qui tiretrs peu davantages de leurs potentialits.

    SituationSecrtariat dtat la Recherche scientifique et la Technologie de Tunisie.

  • Migrations scientifiques internationales Experts tunisiens ltranger

    2

    Le contexte international

    Un mauvais souvenir pour le Nord

    Le transfert massif des cerveaux a touch lEurope notamment pendant et aprs les deuxguerres mondiales au bnfice du Nouveau Monde : LAmrique du Nord.

    Lord Bowden (R.U.) ne dclarait-il pas que si lon capitalise la valeur de ceux qui ont quittles Iles Britanniques vers lAmrique, depuis la guerre, nous aurons beaucoup plus que payle plan Marshall .

    Aujourdhui, cette hmorragie nest quun mauvais souvenir et mme si la mobilit des cer-veaux entre pays du Nord reste et est mme encourage par latmosphre de comptition inter-nationale, elle naffecte plus les rserves stratgiques de ces pays qui affichent un nombredingnieurs et de scientifiques par million dhabitants de 15 20 fois plus important que celuicomptabilis pour les pays en voie de dveloppement (tableau 1).

    Tableau 1. Moyennes des dpenses en R et D (% PNB) en nombre de scientifiques et ingnieurspar millions dhabitants (Unesco Statistical Yearbook 1989)

    * Nombre de pays comptabiliss

    Certains pays du Nord enregistrent certes un flux important de migrants de haut vol aubnfice de voisins plus puissants ; nanmoins, il nen souffrent pas trop vu le flux compensa-toire dimmigrs (du sud et dailleurs) de mme qualit dont le transfert et linstallation sontpratiquement organiss par ltat daccueil. Lexemple du Canada est utile citer. Dans laseule province du Qubec 34 % de la totalit des professeurs universitaires sont des trangers.Ils sont 45 % pour tout le Canada. Ce pays dpense 250 000 $ (canadiens) en moyenne pourformer un professeur, celui-ci une fois oprationnel gnre 20 emplois hautement qualifis (etdonc trs bien pays). Cela ne peut quillustrer lampleur de la perte des uns au bnfice desautres (formateurs oprationnels et gnration demplois de haute technicit).

    Un syndrome pour le Sud

    Pour de nomhreux pays dAsie et dAfrique, lexil sest transform en exode massif qui meten danger les capacits de ces pays se prendre en charge et former les gnrations de larelve. LAfrique a dj perdu le tiers de ses comptences au profit de lEurope. Le Soudan,pour la seule anne 1978, a vu partir 17 % de ses mdecins et dentistes, 30 % de ses ingnieurset 20 % des ses professeurs duniversit. Le Maghreb arabe nest pas en reste et les taux denon-retour, aprs des sjours dtudes ou stages, souvent cits (80 % pour la Tunisie et 60 %pour le Maroc) ne sont pas forcment exagrs. Cette situation ne peut quempirer dans uncontexte international o la comptition conomique entre les vainqueurs de la guerre froide

    R et D S et I

    - Pays industrialiss 2.48 2 792USA 2.8 3 233Japon 2.8 4 836Europe 2.04 (9)* 1 111 (19)*France 2.3 1 888(Ex-) RFA 2.7 2 382Sude 3 2 537Angleterre 2.3 no dataIsral 3.7 4 836- (Ex-) Pays socialistes 4.7 (8)* 4 276 (8)*(Ex-) URSS 5.5 5 414- Pays en voie de dveloppement 0.46 (59)* 0 195 (39)*

  • Migrations scientifiques internationales Experts tunisiens ltranger

    3

    pour le leadership politique est une ralit nouvelle des plus concrtes. Une pression formi-dable sexerce sur le march du savoir et de la technicit au dtriment bien entendu des paysdu Sud. Ces derniers sont dautant plus menacs quils font peu defforts pour prserver leurcapital humain en lui garantissant les conditions minimales dpanouissement et de travail.

    Le cas de la Tunisie

    volution du systme ducatif tunisien

    Depuis la rforme de lenseignement de 1958 ralise au lendemain de lindpendance, le sys-tme ducatif tunisien reste plac dans une perspective dynamique et volutive, qui obit desprincipes et des options fondamentales :

    - dmocratisation et gnralisation de lenseignement ;- accs au dveloppement par la promotion de lhomme ;- ouverture sur la culture moderne et volont daccder la civilisation technologique.

    Le ministre de lducation nationale a pour mission essentielle de permettre tous les enfantsdes deux sexes sans distinction dordre racial, religieux ou social, daccder lducation et lenseignement. Il assure au dpart, tous les enfants lgalit de chances tant pour leur accsaux types denseignement que pour le droulement de leurs tudes, sans autre limite que cellede leurs efforts et de leur mrite. Quant au ministre de lEnseignement suprieur, il a pourmission essentielle la formation des cadres pour le pays et de comptences nationales utilespour le dveloppement conomique et social du pays et la formation par et la recherche.

    Laccs lenseignement suprieur en Tunisie est un droit de fait reconnu tous les bacheliers.Lorientation des tudiants dans les diffrents niveaux de formation seffectue en fonction deleur aptitude ainsi que des ncessits de dveloppement du pays.

    Ltude de lvolution du systme ducatif depuis lindpendance jusqu 1980 montre(tableau 2) que lenseignement primaire et secondaire ont volu beaucoup plus rapidementque lenseignement suprieur qui est rest classique et traditionnel. La capacit daccueil desinstitutions universitaires tait de ce fait trop limite et la formation dans les spcialits nou-velles tait quasiment absente. Pour encourager les laurats et assurer un minimum de forma-tion des comptences dans certains secteurs de pointe, ltat a slectionn, jusqu 1987, lesmeilleurs bacheliers pour tre forms ltranger, particulirement en Europe et en Amrique(Canada et tats-Unis.).

    Depuis le changement politique de 1987, une relle prise de conscience de cette fuite orga-nise de comptences tunisiennes vers ltranger a t constate et des mesures urgentes ontt prises.

    Enseignement primaire Enseignement secondaire Enseignement suprieur

    Annes Nombre Nombre Nombre Nombre Nombre Nombre Nombre Nombre Nombre dcoles dlves dinsti- de lyces dlves de dinstitutions dtudiants denseignants

    tuteurs professeurs universitaires universitaires

    1955/56 729 209 348 5 125 59 31 095 1 212 5 2 268

    1960/61 1108 408 758 7128 67 40 317 2 015 8 2 564 185

    1970/71 2208 922 861 18 465 152 179 527 6 883 13 10 768 1 004

    1980/81 2613 1 045 011 26 989 236 275 133 12 629 55 31 827 2 333

    1990/91 3841 1 398 119 50 280 585 496 840 24 474 77 68 535 4 550

    1995/96 4349 1 460 101 59 432 760 725 926 30 170 89 112 634 6 481

    Tableau 2. volution du systme ducatif en Tunisie depuis lindpendance (1956-1996)

  • Migrations scientifiques internationales Experts tunisiens ltranger

    4

    Parmi ces mesures on note :

    - ladquation entre lenseignement secondaire et lenseignement suprieur ;

    - la formation sur place dans certaines spcialits assure auparavant par les universitstrangres ;

    - loctroi de bourses de 3e cycle pour ceux qui veulent se former dans le pays et limitation desbourses nationales ltranger ;

    - lencouragement lquipement scientifique des laboratoires spcialiss ;

    - lamlioration du taux dencadrement dans les diffrents niveaux de formation universitaire.

    Migration des comptences tunisiennes

    Cette migration a permis au dbut la tunisification des cadres qui sont revenus massive-ment dans le pays jusquen 1980 ; depuis, le retour de ces comptences sest nettement attnusous leffet de contraintes nationales et la pression des offres allchantes des pays daccueil.Parmi les contraintes nationales, on peut citer :

    - Le manque dinformation et de contact du fait que le pays tait jusqu la fin des annes 1980dconnect de la masse quasiment illimite de savoir qui circule travers le monde par rseauxinterposs.

    - La politique de formation ltranger a favoris lenvoi massif de llite de la jeunesse tuni-sienne lge de tous les risques (18 ans) vers les pays dvelopps. Cette politique na pas taccompagne par la cration de structures daccueil la mesure des spcialisations prpares(nuclaire, aronautique, microlectronique, etc.) qui motiveraient le retour. Il est craindrequ dfaut de ces dbouchs, la cration dtablissements dits dExcellence en Tunisie ne feraen fait que retarder lge des dparts. Par ailleurs, linadaptation du systme de recrutementuniversitaire exclut, jusqu maintenant, totalement le retour de spcialistes confirms et nen-courage gure des dbutants diploms confronts parfois des systmes dquivalence injustes(doc. ing, Ph D...) qui favorisent un standard dpass.

    - La politique socio-conomique : La pression dun quotidien caractris par la pnurie de la per-formance et des moyens, provenant souvent de linorganisation et de la non-gestion fait apparatredes priorits souvent aussi conjoncturelles que factices. De ce fait, la dcision et laction ne sins-crivent plus dans le long terme dune stratgie prtablie et se passent, par consquent, volontiersde lapport des experts de haut vol tant et si bien que ces derniers, ici et ailleurs, se sentent detrop dans une conomie gagne en gnral par les rsultats immdiats et sans risques.

    - Paralllement les pays daccueil nont pas facilit le retour de ces comptences en exil, bienau contraire il les ont mme attir par tous les moyens en leur offrant des avantages qui dpas-sent mme ceux des nationaux. En effet il a t mme constat que certaines universits oucentres de recherche ont tout fait pour que les meilleurs restent chez eux. Certains vont mmejusqu contourner la rglementation en vigueur de leur pays pour autoriser le sjour de cescomptences exiles et bnficier de leur apport scientifique. On constate donc que la sduc-tion des rgimes politiques de lopulence est certaine et sous-jacente au choix de lexil.Nanmoins, plus que la dmocratie et les Droits de lHomme qui ne semblent pas rsisterdevant les intrts vitaux de leurs propres promoteurs du Nord, ce serait plutt et pour unebonne part, la socit des liberts individuelles, tolrante et permissive qui attire. Celle quicroit aussi lindividu et ses initiatives pour le progrs.

  • Migrations scientifiques internationales Experts tunisiens ltranger

    5

    Les remdes

    Devant cette hmorragie de comptences et son impact sur lconomie du pays, il a t dciddepuis le changement politique de 1987, une srie de mesures dont lobjectif court et moyen termes est dasseoir une infrastructure daccueil et un environnement propice permet-tant de rcuprer le maximum possible de ces comptences et collaborer avec ceux qui restent ltranger. Parmi ces mesures on peut citer :

    Mesures institutionnelles

    a) Cration du secrtariat dtat la Recherche scientifique et la Technologie en 1991 dontla mission principale est :

    - le dveloppement de la capacit de la Tunisie tirer profit des avantages conomiques queprocure le progrs scientifique et technique ;- laccroissement du potentiel scientifique national dans tous les domaines.

    b) Cration de grandes coles comme lcole polytechnique et lInstitut national des sciencesappliques et de la technologie pour limiter la formation ltranger et rduire les dparts dupays un ge relativement prcoce.

    c) Dveloppement des centres de recherche existants : plusieurs centres et instituts derecherche ont t soumis lvaluation et une restructuration a eu lieu dans le sens de renfor-cement des moyens humains et matriels.

    d) Cration de centres spcialiss : Il a t constat que la migration scientifique concerne sur-tout les technologies avances et les spcialits de pointe. Pour limiter ces fuites et faire bn-ficier le pays du progrs de la science plusieurs centres spcialiss ont t crs tels que leCentre de biotechnologie Sfax, le Centre des sciences et technologie nuclaires, le Centrenational de tldtection et lInstitut de recherche et danalyse physico-chimique.

    Actions directes

    Paralllement ces mesures dont leffet est long terme, des actions court et moyen termesont t entreprises afin de faire profiter le pays des comptences ltranger en les impliquantchacune dans son domaine dans des actions de recherche-dveloppement et surtout en dve-loppant des contacts entre comptences en exil et leurs homologues dans le pays. Parmi lesactions les plus importantes :

    a) Cration de banques de donnes : une banque de comptences scientifiques et techniques at mise en place ; elle sert rpertorier ces comptences, identifier leurs secteurs dactivit etfaciliter la coopration avec les laboratoires nationaux (figures 1 et 2). Une autre banque decomptences des cadres techniques travaillant dans la coopration bilatrale ou internationalea t ralise (tableau 3) et a permis de recenser ces cadres et de les classer selon leur secteurde spcialit par rgion, pays ou organisation internationale ou rgionales. Le rle de cescadres exports serait surtout une publicit pour le savoir-faire tunisien et permettrait de drai-ner dautres recrutements dans les pays daccueil pour de jeunes comptences tunisiennes larecherche dun travail.

    b) Programme Tokten : cest un programme de transfert de connaissances par lintermdiairede nationaux expatris. Il est conu dans le cadre de la coopration avec le Pnud. Il permet auxcomptences tunisiennes expatries de fournir une contribution scientifique et professionnelle

  • Migrations scientifiques internationales Experts tunisiens ltranger

    6

    directe dans les diffrents secteurs de dveloppement du pays, sous forme de consultation decourte dure, autres que la participation, lanimation ou lorganisation de sminaires et atelierstechniques. Lidentit de culture et de langue ainsi que lattachement la patrie et le volonta-riat sont des facteurs qui facilitent normment ce genre de transfert de technologie et desavoir-faire. Les bnficiaires du programme Tokten sont les comptences nationales expa-tries (consultant et experts, professeurs et chercheurs) disposant dun savoir-faire hautementqualifi et dune exprience professionnelle approprie susceptible de contribuer leffort dedveloppement national sous ses diffrentes formes et dans tous les secteurs de dveloppementet notamment ceux des sciences et technologies.

    c) Cadre juridique : Les principales priorits de la politique nationale sont la matrise de latechnologie, la formation par et la recherche dans les diverses disciplines, le soutien larecherche applique dans les domaines prioritaires et la diffusion de la culture scientifique ausein de la socit tunisienne. Afin datteindre ces objectifs une rforme globale du systme derecherche a t entame depuis 1992 et a t couronne par la promulgation au mois de jan-vier 1996 dune loi dorientation de la recherche et du dveloppement technologique dont deuxarticles sur 22 au total sont rservs aux formes de coopration avec les comptences tuni-siennes ltranger. En effet larticle 19 prvoit des avantages particuliers pour les chercheurstunisiens ltranger lorsquils sont invits assurer lencadrement de recherche ou partici-

    Moyen Afrique du Pays Organisations Autres TOTALOrient Nord africains internationales pays

    Education 2 726 100 44 28 114 2 984Sant 2 099 23 1 16 34 2 157Administration 205 4 6 135 31 246Transport et 254 31 20 274tlcomunicationTravaux publics 176 10 11 15 9 206Electricit et mcanique 798 53 1 8 27 879Agriculture 67 13 3 64 5 87

    Autres domaines 309 3 6 40 29 347

    TOTAL 6 634 206 72 337 268 7 180

    Tableau 3. Cooprants tunisiens ltranger

    26,77%

    10,04%

    61,34%

    1,86%

    EUROPE OUEST

    AMERIQUE NORD

    MONDE ARABE

    AFRIQUE SUBSAH

    Figure 2. Rpartition par zones gographiques

    17,7%

    6,9%

    10%

    30%

    11,8%

    23,6%

    Mdecine et biologie

    Agriculture

    Entreprise, industrie

    Economie, finances

    Enseignement, recherche

    Arts, sciences de l'homme et de la socit

    Figure 1. Rpartition par domaines dactivit

  • Migrations scientifiques internationales Experts tunisiens ltranger

    7

    per des projets de recherche entrant dans le cadre des priorits nationales. Il en est de mmepour larticle 20 qui encourage les institutions de recherche et denseignement inviter leschercheurs tunisiens travaillant ltranger pour raliser des projets communs de recherche.I1 en est de mme de la loi et les decrts organisant lenseignement suprieur. En effet plu-sieurs possibilits ont t offertes la contribution des chercheurs et enseignants tunisiens ltranger lenseignement suprieur et la recherche dans leur pays. En effet ces textes pr-voient plusieurs formules de participation telles que :

    - enseignant chercheur visiteur (pour les universits) ;- enseignant chercheur associ (non universitaire) ;- accords de coopration bilatrale ou multilatrale entre enseignants chercheurs tunisiens rsi-dents et leurs compatriotes ltranger ;- encadrement commun de jeunes chercheurs tunisiens inscrits ltranger et travaillant dansles universits tunisiennes.

    Par ailleurs deux missions universitaires ont t installes lune Paris (pour lEurope) etlautre Montral (pour lAmrique) et dont le rle est dencadrer les comptences tunisiennes ltranger et dassurer la liaison avec leur homologues en Tunisie dans les spcialits cor-respondantes.

    d) Cours et confrences : pour certaines formations spcialises et en cas de manque de com-ptences dans les universits tunisiennes et les Instituts de recherche, la priorit de coopra-tion est donne aux Tunisiens ltranger lorsque cela est possible et les frais de sjour sontcomptabiliss de faon avantageuse et en fonction du nombre dheures de cours dispensescalcules sur la base du nombre dheures enseignes par semaine et proportionnellement ausalaire dun professeur plein temps sur place.

    e) Associations de chercheurs tunisiens ltranger : la cration dassociation scientifiqueconstitue un cadre de regroupement des Tunisiens ltranger du fait que ces associations sontbases essentiellement sur le volontariat. La plupart des Tunisiens ltranger sont inscritsdans ces associations surtout ceux des grandes villes o la communaut tunisienne est relati-vement bien reprsente.

    Les associations dj identifies sont 6 rparties comme suit (tableau 4).

    Ces Associations ont largement contribu une meilleure identification des comptences tuni-siennes ltranger. Suite ce nouveau dynamisme, il a t cre un consortium (TSC) das-sociations qui regroupe des chercheurs de diffrents pays se runissant rgulirement pour unecoopration plus troite.

    Associations Pays ou rgion Tl. et fax

    Tunisian scientific USA Tl. : (1) 7039655312Society (TSS) Fax : (1) 6158709431

    Arab Scientist and Technologist USA Tl. : 217 3333774Abroad Fax : 217 3339819

    Tunisien ScientistConsortium USA

    Association des chercheurs et enseignants tunisiens en France Tl. : (33) 0148814344France Fax : (33) 0148814344

    Association des jeunes chercheurs et universitaires France Tl. : (33) 0144856066maghrbins en France Fax : (33) 0142265666

    Tunisian Scientific Society Canada Tl. : (418) 656 7777Fax : (418) 656 7722

    Tableau 4. Association des comptences tunisienne ltranger

  • Migrations scientifiques internationales Experts tunisiens ltranger

    8

    f) Congrs et sminaire : la plupart des associations prcites organisent presque annuellementet en collaboration avec les organismes nationaux concerns des rencontres avec leur adhrantdans le pays. Dautre part, lOffice national des Tunisiens ltranger organise des sminaireset colloques dont la dernire manifestation eut lieu du 19 au 20 avril 1996 sur La contribu-tion des comptences tunisiennes au processus de dveloppement et qui a regroup des cher-cheurs et ingnieurs venant de 11 pays (France, Italie, Suisse, Sude, Allemagne, Canada,tats-Unis, Belgique, Autriche, Maroc et Mauritanie).

    g) Programme de recherche (The Joint Projet Program) : dans le cadre du renforcement desrelations entre les chercheurs tunisiens ltranger et particulirement ceux des tats-UnisdAmrique et du Canada et leur homologues en Tunisie, le secrtariat dtat la Recherchescientifique et la Technologie a lanc cette anne un programme dont lobjectif est laconduite commune de projets de recherche entre des Tunisiens se trouvant dans des institutionsappartenant des pays diffrents. Lobjectif de ce programme est le transfert de technologieavance et linitiation de nouvelles spcialits dans le pays afin dasseoir un minimum desavoir-faire et dassurer le dveloppement sur place de ces nouveaux crneaux jusque l peureprsents dans le pays. Ce programme couvre les sciences de lingnieur telles que lner-gie, linformatique, les tlcommunications et lindustrie, les sciences mathmatiques, phy-siques et naturelles, lagriculture et la sant. Il facilite aussi le dplacement des chercheursentre les deux laboratoires et permet une meilleure intgration du pays dans les nouveaux axesde la recherche-dveloppement.

    Conclusion

    lpoque du village plantaire caractris par limportance du savoir et la circulation de lin-formation, la fuite des comptences na pas les mmes effets quauparavant sur les pays dmi-gration. Lutilisation distance de ces comptences est possible voir mme ncessaire pour letransfert de la technologie aujourdhui svrement contrl. La Tunisie, pays appartenant aubassin mditerranen, au monde arabo-musulman et la terre dAfrique a contribu au coursde son histoire par lintermdiaire dminentes personnalits lenrichissement du savoir uni-versel, le grand sociologue Ibn Khaldoun et le mdecin reconnu Ibn Jazzar ne sont que desexemples de migrations scientifiques fructueuses pour la Tunisie et pour le monde entier.L exploitation des comptences scientifiques Tunisiennes actuellement ltranger est ren-due encore plus facile grce au progrs de la technologie des communications. Ces ambassa-deurs scientifiques de la Tunisie sont depuis le changement de 1987 accrdits par leur payspour travailler dans ces pays daccueil et faire bnficier leur pays du progrs que procure leuractivit de recherche.