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Danes are ‘cold’ say international students

International students return home because they are lonely, shows new study. Danes are aloof

Most international students who come to Denmark to study return home as soon as they are qualified, more often than not because they are lonely and consider their Danish counterparts ‘cold’, or often ‘aloof’, writes and

In a new survey by the Ungdommens Analyse Enhed (UAE) (Youth Analysis Unit) 22-year old Ana Gomes from Portugal was just one of many who felt that Danes just aren’t that ‘open’ towards foreign students.

Mads Engholm, senior consultant at UAE, says it’s fairly obvious that people won’t stay in a place where they don’t feel part of the community.

Confirms previous studies

The study is in line with earlier research, such as one into expatriates by the Oxford research group. Here 71 per cent of the foreigners who originally believed they would stay more than three years, do not actually stay. The study showed that Danes’ unfriendliness and lack of welcoming behaviour was a factor.

A sub-section of this study was of international staff
at the University of Copenhagen. Here Denmark scored highly on personal safety, infrastructure and overall quality of life, but the possibilities for meeting Danes or even other expats did not live up to expectations.

41 per cent rated the openness of the Danes as either ‘less good’ or ‘not good’ in this study.

Denmark needs the manpower

For the latest study, Mads Engholm of UAE warns that in the long run it’s going to be expensive for Denmark because as soon as the crisis is over there’s going to be a need for highly-qualified manpower.

»It’s a waste of resources to see so many bright young people leave the country. We need to do more to encourage then to say,« he says. .

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