Last year, Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff introduced "Science without Borders", a
scholarship program worth 3.5 billion reais (€1.5 billion) to send
100,000 talented Brazilians to study abroad. Rousseff planned to
get economics stakeholders on board as well by having businesses
pay for 25,000 of these spots.
Now, the National Petroleum Agency (ANP) announced that it authorized Brazil's largest
oil producer, Petrobras, to finance 5,000 students to study abroad
as part of "Science without Borders". With funds of 320.9 million
reais (€139 million), Petrobras will support undergraduate,
postgraduate and doctoral students.
1% of oil revenues for R&D and
This development is directly linked to the economic boom Brazil
currently experiences. Only recently, it became public that the country overtook the United
Kingdom as the 6th largest economy in the world driven
by income from natural resources.
The state owned firm Petrobras significantly contributes to this
growth which also benefits higher education. Part of the firm's oil
concession contract with the government is a clause that obliges
the firm to invest 1% of gross revenues from high yield oil fields
into R&D and education projects. This is also where the money
for Petrobras 5,000 scholarships comes from.
Universities in the United States, France and Great Britain
might be especially happy about this news. During her diplomatic
travels abroad, Rousseff signed agreements paving the way for
talented Brazilian students into American, French and British