Skilled emigration and skill creation: A quasi-experiment
AbstractDoes the emigration of highly-skilled workers deplete local human capital? The answer is not obvious if migration prospects induce human capital formation. We analyze a unique natural quasi-experiment in the Republic of the Fiji Islands, where political shocks have provoked one of the largest recorded exoduses of skilled workers from a developing country. Mass emigration began unexpectedly and has occurred only in a well-defined subset of the population, creating a treatment group that foresaw likely emigration and two different quasi-control groups that did not. We use rich census and administrative microdata to address a range of concerns about experimental validity. This allows plausible causal attribution of post-shock changes in human capital accumulation to changes in emigration patterns. We show that high rates of emigration by tertiary-educated Fiji Islanders not only raised investment in tertiary education in Fiji; they moreover raised the stock of tertiary educated people in Fiji—net of departures.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by International and Development Economics in its series International and Development Economics Working Papers with number idec08-05.
Length: 65 pages
Date of creation: 2008
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Other versions of this item:
- Michael Clemens & Satish Chand, 2008. "Skilled Emigration and Skill Creation: A quasi-experiment," Working Papers 152, Center for Global Development.
- F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
- J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
- O15 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2008-09-13 (All new papers)
- NEP-DEV-2008-09-13 (Development)
- NEP-HRM-2008-09-13 (Human Capital & Human Resource Management)
- NEP-LAB-2008-09-13 (Labour Economics)
- NEP-MIG-2008-09-13 (Economics of Human Migration)
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