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Tuesday’s papers: Foreign student brain drain, language rights and basic income

Finland becomes a dead end for foreign post-grads, minority language rights in an increasingly nationalist climate and a top economist slams basic income.

tutkijoita laboratoriossa
Image: AOP

Foreign post-graduate students are often left hanging after completing studies at Finnish institutions, writes national daily Helsingin Sanomat, which reports that Finnish universities have given empty promises to overseas researchers.

As part of the Education Ministry’s internationalisation strategy, Finnish universities actively recruit foreign research talent. But Johanna Moisio from the Finnish Union of University Researchers and Teachers (FUURT) told HS that foreign doctorates lack the networks to land jobs after graduating, and universities offer little help in opening doors to the private sector. This forces non-EU citizens to leave the country when their student visas expire, contributing to an expensive brain drain for Finland and frustrating situation for foreign scholars.

FUURT said that between 2005 and 2016 some 660 foreigners who obtained their doctorates in Finland left the country, resulting in significant intellectual capital flight.

Populism v minority language

Swedish-language daily Hufvudstadsbladet explores how the new legislature will safeguard the rights of Finland’s Swedish-speaking minority.

The paper notes that the Swedish People’s Party will most likely find an ally in the Left Alliance, as the party has several bilingual MPs, including its leader Li Andersson.

Some worry that the nationalist Finns Party, now with the second-most seats in Parliament, may revive attempts to wipe out compulsory Swedish-language education in schools.

Money for nothing?

MIT economist Daron Acemoglu picks apart basic income in an interview with business daily Kauppalehti ahead of his visit to Finland on Tuesday.

To really help people, Acemoglu proposed not taxing salaries up to 2,500 euros per month, writes KL.

The professor told the paper that the basic income concept traces two roots, the liberal right, which wants to diminish citizens’ dependency on the state by contracting the safety net into one cash grant, and the left which, according to Acemoglu, doesn't fully appreciate the hefty tax burden basic income would require.

Acemoglu, who’s considered to be heading for a Nobel in economics, is delivering this year's Yrjö Jahnsson lecture in Helsinki on Wednesday.

EDIT An earlier version of this review erroneously stated Acemoglu was to speak at the Etla think tank in Helsinki on Tuesday. The mistake was ours, not Kauppalehti's.

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