The new study by the National Documentation Centre (EKT) entitled ‘Statistics on doctorate holders graduating from Greek Universities 2015’ presents interesting data on the country’s research personnel. The study includes data (distribution per institute, thesis field, international mobility, previous qualifications, etc) on those receiving doctorates in 2015 from Greek universities. As the Director of EKT, Dr. Evi Sachini noted, ‘Holders of doctorates represent the best of research personnel, with very high-level skills and specialised knowledge. Of particular importance are the new doctorate holders graduating every year from Greek universities as they are a valuable asset for the transition to a knowledge-intensive economy.’
The figures for new doctorate holders during 2005-2015 remained at approximately 2,000 per year. This latest study shows that in 2015, there were, in fact, 1,810 new doctorate holders who earned their PhDs at Greek universities. Most of them had earned their previous academic qualifications (Bachelor or Master’s) at Greek universities (86%), while quite a number (14%) returned to the country after studies in the UK, Italy and the USA. In terms of gender, percentages for men (50.7%) and women (49.3%) were almost the same. The majority of new doctorate holders were up to 35 years of age (46.6%), while this was followed by the 35-44 age group (38.1%).
The main scientific fields of theses were Medicine and Health Sciences (31.6%), followed by Natural sciences (24.3%) and Social Sciences (23%). The lowest scores were recorded for Science Engineering and Technology, the Humanities and Agricultural Sciences.
With regard to the educational level of parents of doctorate holders, at least one of the two parents had a higher education qualification (36.7%), a secondary education qualification (32.5%) or a doctorate (8.5%).
The main source of funding of doctoral studies for 36.8% of new doctorate holders in 2015 were personal savings and family support, while for 28.6% it was scholarships from Greek institutes.
A period of 6 years was required by the majority to complete their thesis (26.5%). There was little difference in percentages for those taking 4, 5 and 7 years (14.9, 16.6 and 15.4 respectively).
For those remaining abroad for the length of their doctoral studies, usually to carry out research for their thesis, the most popular countries were the UK (22.6%), Germany (16.7%) and the USA (12.1%).
This study is the first in a series of annual studies to be published by EKT, which recognising the importance of new doctorate holders as highly skilled personnel and as the official provider of national statistics for Research, Technology, Development and Innovation, incorporate the statistics collected into indicators to capture essential characteristics. Details are collected from the National Archive for PhD Theses which, by law, EKT has been mandated to maintain since 1985. With 40,000 theses, the most of which are available electronically, the National Archive for Phd Theses (www.didaktorika.gr) is a unique store of Greek scientific output and knowledge of the highest quality.