Assessing the Supply and Demand for Scientists and Technologists in Europe

Pearson R, Jagger N, Connor H, Perryman S with de Grip A, Marey P, Corvers F | Report 377 | Institute for Employment Studies | Feb 2001

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This report, based on a study carried out by IES and ROA for the Research Directorate General of the European Commission, reviews the available evidence on the supply and demand for professional scientists and technologists (S&Ts) in Europe.

It was recognised at the outset that it was an inherently difficult task, given the rapid rate of change, the diversity across occupations, countries, and their labour markets, and the inadequacy of existing data sources.

The picture is also often confused by some widely publicised ad hoc studies, such as on the demand for IT skills. Some of these have been based on poor research and may have been undertaken for publicity or 'lobbying' purposes to get more government resources spent on training.

A subsidiary objective therefore was to explore what could be achieved, and where data sources might be improved to add value to policy making in this challenging area.