MANILA—A new national Constitution does more for the Philippines than endorse the political reforms of President Corazon Aquino. Scientists hope it will also stem the emigration of doctors and researchers, encourage research to improve the country's economy, and promote involvement in R&D by the private sector.

More than 12,000 Filipino scientists and engineers emigrated between 1966 and 1978, according to Fernando Sanchez, past president of the Association of Philippine Medical Colleges. About 120,000 Filipino doctors and nurses are now working abroad, primarily in the United States.

Sanchez said that although the level of science graduates has not dropped, "more of these are not practicing their professions or have joined the mass exodus of professionals for overseas jobs."

Money is the primary reason scientists work abroad. The top salary for faculty members is 6,000 pesos ($300) a month at the University of the Philippines, and less at private universities. Most of...

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