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sive scheme, but it has minimal resolution for most of the disciplines of basic sciences.

Figure 1 is a plot of the number of ISI papers produced annually by the research community of Iran. It reflects the fact that the scientific activity of Iran has gone through substantial changes during the past four decades. If we take 1970 as our point of departure, we observe that in light of the 1973 world crisis and a noticeable increase in the country’s income as a result of the increase in oil prices, Iran’s performance reached a peak at the time of the revolution, 1979. Then, as a consequence of the Iran-Iraq war and the revolution, science production experienced a collapse. The performance in 1985 was reduced to almost one-fourth of the peak year, 1978–1979.

However, when one looks at the structure of the data (not presented here), one observes that the brain drain was predominantly confined to the fields of clinical medicine (the migration of specialists was mainly to North America). Therefore, when in 1988 the Graduate Study Bill (GSB) was put into action to internalize and expand the education at graduate levels, the decision was timely. The various departments of basic and engineering sciences were ready for the task. From Figure 1 we see that this decision bore fruit almost immediately. The scientific production of the country began to rise after a decade of decline and stagnation. The growth was sixfold one decade after the GSB and 40-fold by 2005.

There are, however, certain instabilities, and the dynamism is somewhat

FIGURE 1 Scientific profile of Iran in the world mainstream research science (1970–2005), number of annually published ISI papers.



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