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Consumers and the brain drain: Product and process design and the gains from emigration

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  • Kuhn, Peter
  • McAusland, Carol

Abstract

We consider the welfare effects of skilled worker emigration in a context where skilled labor plays a role in product or process design. We show such emigration can benefit the residents left behind, even when consumers' tastes exhibit a form of home bias. This is because emigration improves the design of goods designed by skilled emigrants but consumed in the sending country. In contrast to existing models of beneficial brain drain, our results do not require agglomeration economies, education-related externalities, remittances, return migration, or an emigration "lottery". Instead, they are driven purely by differences in market size that induce skilled emigrants to design better products or production processes abroad than at home.

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  • Kuhn, Peter & McAusland, Carol, 2009. "Consumers and the brain drain: Product and process design and the gains from emigration," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(2), pages 287-291, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:inecon:v:78:y:2009:i:2:p:287-291
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Schneider, Lutz & Kubis, Alexander & Wiest, Delia, 2010. "Selektivität, soziale Bindung und räumliche Mobilität –Eine Analyse der Rückkehrpräferenz," IWH Discussion Papers 17/2010, Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).
    2. Frédéric Docquier & Hillel Rapoport, 2012. "Globalization, Brain Drain, and Development," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 50(3), pages 681-730, September.
    3. Gibson, John & McKenzie, David, 2014. "Scientific mobility and knowledge networks in high emigration countries: Evidence from the Pacific," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 43(9), pages 1486-1495.
    4. Vasilakis, Chrysovalantis, 2013. "Globalized Market for Talents and Inequality: What Can Be Learnt from European Football?," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 1034, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
    5. McAusland, Carol & Kuhn, Peter, 2011. "Bidding for brains: Intellectual property rights and the international migration of knowledge workers," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(1), pages 77-87, May.
    6. Blau, Francine D. & Kahn, Lawrence M., 2012. "Immigration and the Distribution of Incomes," IZA Discussion Papers 6921, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    7. Mehdi Chowdhury & Arijit Mukherjee, 2016. "Labour Market Integration and Innovation: The Implications on Consumers," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 84(6), pages 771-794, December.

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