France Woos US Scientists Via New Website

Contrary to the implications of President Trump's recently announced decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate change agreement, it's a great time to be a scientist in America. French President Emmanuel Macron has launched a website called, MakeOurPlanet, to encourage disenfranchised American scientists to continue their work in France. The press release introducing the new website was transmitted to French journalists in English, an unprecedented act by a French president.

The new initiative reinforces an invitation Macron extended in an English-language video posted to Twitter in February 2017. "Please come to France ... it's your nation," he appealed, while campaigning for the French presidency.

Generous incentives

The invitation is extended to senior university faculty members, junior researchers and PhD candidates in the fields of climate change, energy transition and earth system science. Senior scientists will be permitted to apply for grants of up to 1.5 million euros, plus compensation for extra staffing and working expenses and assistance with the transatlantic relocation. Junior scientists are eligible to apply for grants of up to one million euros.

Macron cited the lack of restrictions on spouses working in France as an additional inducement. For families with children, schools in France are free, and tuition at French universities compares very favorably with those in the United States.

Easy application process

Unlike the soul-destroying red tape associated with applying for research grants in the United States, the process for applying via the website to take President Macron up on his generous offer is incredibly easy. Prospective candidates are required to submit a one-page research proposal along with their professional resume.

According to the website poses a few questions about why they are fighting for climate change and what they are currently working on. Rather sweetly, the final question is about what their "dream" is.

Attractions of performing research in France

France is a well-established leader in scientific excellence and innovation. Numerous scientists and mathematicians who have conducted research within the nurturing French environment have won Nobel Prizes in Chemistry, Physics, and Physiology or Medicine. Many others have earned the Fields Medal, awarded every four years by the International Mathematical Union and the highest honor that a mathematician can achieve.

France is at the forefront of technology and finance in the world of green finance and green technology and holds a leading position in climate modeling, solar photovoltaics, and an inexhaustive list of environmental research areas.

Researchers migrating to France may expect an enviable infrastructure, strong financial environment and a favorable lifestyle. With limitless opportunities to pursue their goals and achieve excellence in research, it's a great time for a scientist in America to relocate to France.

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