Reduction of scholarships lead graduate students to work as Uber

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The entry into a postgraduate studies is an achievement for many researchers, but without bag and facing the economic crisis, students resort to informality to finance their studies. Without a formal contract, the young researchers enter the group of 34.7 million Brazilians who are in the informality, according to data from Pnad released this Friday.

In ten years, the number of scholarships offered by CNPq it dropped 68% for the master’s and 80% for the doctorate, due to discontinuity and cuts in the portfolio’s budget, according to the CNPq’s own database. And the values ​​of R$ 1,500 for master’s and R$ 2,200 for doctorate have not been readjusted for 8 years.

To obtain a scholarship, the candidate cannot have a formal employment relationship. As the value is low, even those who get one are often forced to supplement the budget with informal work.

The scenario of few scholarships for master’s and doctoral degrees made many resort to underemployment. For economist Bruno Imaizumi, from LCA Consultores, it is a reflection of the drop in the promotion of science and the rise in inflation since the beginning of the pandemic, which demands a source of income in the short term, even if with salaries below expectations for professionalization.

Discover the story of four graduate students who, in the face of economic constraints and lack of scholarships, give up their time dedicated to academic research, their profession, in order to survive.