The 30-month project, given the green light by Minister Chu Ngoc Anh late December, will target outstanding Vietnamese individuals in order to develop the domestic science and technology sector.

The project will enable scientists, businessmen and students studying in foreign countries to connect with foreign experts in the science and technology sector so that domestic partners can attract both Vietnamese and foreign experts to work in the sector.

Prof. Tran Thanh Van (L) and Prof. Ngo Bao Chau (R) are the two Vietnamese experts overseas with contributions to Vietnam's science and technology sector. In the photo: The two professors at a meeting in Vietnam in 2016. Source:
Under its initial schedule, the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Russia, Japan, Australia and Canada - all major centers for foreign Vietnamese - will be major areas of the network.

The network was scheduled to connect these people via an under-construction interactive website and international workshops, Anh said.

The website would provide a database of about 25-50 Vietnamese senior experts and advisers, 100 successful businessmen and about 3,000 experts in various aspects across the world as well as 500 projects owned by domestic partners that want to recruit Vietnamese experts overseas, he said.

The fund for the project, worth USD 1.5 million, was drawn from the ministry’s Fostering Innovation through Research Science and Technology (FIRST) project.

The project aims to accomplish the imperative of boosting the connection among Vietnamese experts overseas, domestic experts and partners. The brain drain is one of Vietnam’s ongoing challenges, and the country is in need of qualified human resources to develop the national science and technology.

Ta Ba Hung, from the FIRST project, said at a workshop held in Hanoi on December 28 that it estimated over 400,000 well-educated Vietnamese overseas were living and working in various sectors in foreign countries, encompassing hi-tech sectors.

“It is a big source of grey matter and management skills,” he said.

"However, only 200 of them return to the country for teaching and research each year."

Hung said poor connection among Vietnamese experts overseas and domestic experts was to blame. Additionally, shortage of information about the demand of “using” grey matter at domestic institutes, universities, and businesses also added to the situation.

There was also a lack of adequate policies to lure the talented Vietnamese overseas, he said.

Source: VNA