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Brain Drained: A Tale of Two Countries

  • Ben-David, Dan

This paper provides a comparative examination of how public universities in two countries, the United States and Israel, have evolved over the past few decades - and how differences between the two have culminated in a rate of academic brain drain from the latter to the former that is unparalleled in the western world. The number of Israelis in the top 40 American departments in physics, chemistry, philosophy, computer science and economics, as a percentage of their remaining colleagues in Israel, is over twice the overall academic emigration rates (at all levels) from European countries. Signs of what is currently occurring in Israel have already begun to appear in other developed countries as well, though on a completely different scale - still - making the country an important case study that other countries should study, understand and prepare against a similar eventuality.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 6717.

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Date of creation: Feb 2008
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:6717
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  1. Paul M. Romer, 2001. "Should the Government Subsidize Supply or Demand in the Market for Scientists and Engineers?," NBER Chapters, in: Innovation Policy and the Economy, Volume 1, pages 221-252 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Ben-David, D. & Papell, D.H., 1996. "Slowdowns and Meltdowns: Post-War Growth Evidence from 74 Countries," Papers 9-96, Tel Aviv.
  3. Philippe Aghion & Mathias Dewatripont & Jeremy C. Stein, 2008. "Academic freedom, private-sector focus, and the process of innovation," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 39(3), pages 617-635.
  4. Ben-David, Dan, 2007. "Soaring Minds: The Flight of Israel’s Economists," CEPR Discussion Papers 6338, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Ehrenberg, Ronald G. & McGraw, Marquise & Mrdjenovic, Jesenka, 2006. "Why do field differentials in average faculty salaries vary across universities?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 241-248, June.
  6. Stein, Jeremy C. & Dewatripont, Mathias & Aghion, Philippe, 2008. "Academic Freedom, Private-Sector Focus, and the Process of Innovation," Scholarly Articles 3637074, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  7. Richard R. Nelson, 1959. "The Simple Economics of Basic Scientific Research," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 67, pages 297.
  8. Boyle Glenn, 2008. "Pay Peanuts and Get Monkeys? Evidence from Academia," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 8(1), pages 1-26, July.
  9. Kenneth Arrow, 1962. "Economic Welfare and the Allocation of Resources for Invention," NBER Chapters, in: The Rate and Direction of Inventive Activity: Economic and Social Factors, pages 609-626 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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