International academic mobility programs as instruments to promote international development: The case of PEC-PG
Keywords:PEC-PG, international academic mobility, international development, internationalization of higher education, international educational cooperation
The main objective of this paper is to analyze the role that the Program for Graduate Agreement-Students (PEC-PG) has in the promotion of international development. The research methodology involved document analysis, interviews with PEC-PG’s coordinators in the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq), The Brazilian Federal Agency for Support and Evaluation of Graduate Education (CAPES) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MRE), as well as the analysis of survey answers provided by PEC-PG alumni who participated in the program from 2010 to 2015. The main conclusion was that PEC-PG contributes to enhance the capacity of human resources, as evidenced by the analysis of alumni answers, the better employment situation of ex-students after the program, their area of professional activity and the large number of former beneficiaries who have taken up leadership positions. However, this research has also identified that there are some challenges to be overcome by PG-PEC so that it reaches its full potential in the promotion of international development, such as the concentration of selected candidates in a few countries, the brain drain of former scholarship holders that decided to stay in Brazil after the end of their studies and the inexistence of PEC-PG alumni networks.