Larissa Zarate in charge of the Symposium of Spanish Scientists in the UK

For more than a decade, Larissa Zarate’s career has “kept on hold” in the United Kingdom, a country that, as a researcher and scientist, she knows offers her many more job opportunities than Spain and into which she is fully immersed. There are many professionals in the same situation, they have mixed fears and feelings and have shared them for eleven years at the SRUK/CERU UK Spanish Scholars Association.

a group of more than 700 people, including Larissa Zarate and her husband Diego Alonso, both organizers this year of what will be the X SRUK/CERU International Symposium; A meeting to be held in London from 7 to 9 July with the aim of establishing contacts between the members of the entity themselves and also with researchers who are part of the other international diaspora.

He points out that thanks to the recognition of the work and publication carried out in a decade of activity, it will allow them to open the conference at the Royal Institution, the most prestigious scientific publishing organization in the country, which has hundreds of scholars. He announced incredible discoveries, such as Michael Faraday with electromagnetism.


“I didn’t think they would open so many doors for me when I arrived with the Spanish formation to continue growing.”

A session that will bring together relevant people from the academic and institutional life of the Spanish diaspora in the UK, which will be joined by the EU Ambassador to the country, Spain’s Pedro Serrano. In addition, there you will be able to listen to scientists and promoters Clara Grima and Rosario López Cuerva, in what is the first time that two Spanish ladies from the Royal Institute speak, and in a day entirely dedicated to Spanish science.

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These will be added on Saturday by two engineers from AMIT’s Women in Technologies network. It’s the first time we’ve had four women as keynote speakers. Then there will be round tables with people from the diaspora and other research communities. “We are very proud of this year’s program,” admitted Larissa Zarate

The seminar, which is expected to be attended by about 200 people, is perhaps the most visible act in a society that seeks “to create a community and not feel lonely abroad, because being abroad culturally carries a lot of weight and having a network of people who are in it. Your situation itself helps a lot ».

Britain’s exit from the European Union

“The lack of access from European researchers was very noticeable. There has been a change in profile »

What’s more, since Brexit came into effect, something that’s clearly having a negative impact on the arrival of research talent into the country and on how people deal with the loss of scholarships… has been very noticeable from European researchers. We receive students from India and the East. There was a complete change of profile. We will see what happens in the coming years when the European programs that provide the most funding and that also include cooperation with other countries and staff mobility are resolved.


Obviously, the most frequent theme among scholars who are abroad will come to the fore again at the Colloquium: the possible return to Spain, if they are to move to another country or remain in England. It is the eternal question.

She came to England a decade ago encouraged by her offer of a PhD in assisted reproduction, something she studied in Spain, where I can’t find the same option. “I later realized that it is very easy to get a job and move from the system to learning new things.”

Indeed, although it had been clear to him from the outset that it would be difficult to stay in his country, “I did not think so many doors would open for me in England when I arrived with the Spanish formation continuing to grow”. However, after ten years there, she and her husband were appreciative of starting their way back; But more than that, so far, they haven’t found anything like what they have there. “The person who comes back is very brave,” he snapped.

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