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The Brain Drain between Knowledge Based Economies: the European Human Capital Outflows to the US

  • Ahmed Tritah

This paper uses the 1980, 1990, 2000 and 2006 U.S. micro censuses data to document the magnitude and nature of European human capital outflow to the United States. I found that while emigration is about a small number of individuals, the share of Europeans who are leaving is increasing as one moves along the educational distribution and ladder of occupations that matter the most in the knowledge economy. Next, using productivity based brain drain indices it is found that aggregate human capital conveyed by emigrants has increased since the 1990s. Finally, as a better understanding on the nature of human capital embodied in European emigrants, I show that the Europeans earn a positive wage premium relative to the US natives. Moreover, this premium is higher for the most recent expatriates cohorts, providing further evidence that the quality of European emigrants has increased.

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Paper provided by CEPII research center in its series Working Papers with number 2008-08.

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Date of creation: Jun 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cii:cepidt:2008-08
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  1. Angel de la Fuente & Antonio Ciccone, 2003. "Human capital in a global and knowledge-based economy," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 562.03, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  2. Alan B. Krueger & Mikael Lindahl, 2000. "Education for Growth: Why and For Whom?," NBER Working Papers 7591, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Virginie Coudert & Cécile Couharde, 2009. "Currency Misalignments and Exchange Rate Regimes in Emerging and Developing Countries," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 17(1), pages 121-136, 02.
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