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International knowledge flows and the administrative barriers to mobility

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  • Sultan Orazbayev

    (University College London)

Abstract

The literature on diffusion of knowledge has shown positive influence of physical and cultural proximity, common Language and contiguity on the speed and magnitude of international knowledge flows. Knowledge diffusion is also facilitated by co-location, even temporary one, which helps researchers form personal ties and exchange tacit information through face-to-face contact. However, the ability of researchers to disseminate the results of their work, especially recent or on-going research, through temporary co-location (including international conferences, workshops and seminars) will be affected by the administrative barriers to mobility (‘paper walls’), for example travel visas. This paper uses a gravity-style empirical model to examine the link between the administrative barriers to mobility of the skilled workers (and students) and the magnitude/direction of international knowledge flows between 45 countries from 1990 to 2014. Additional calculations use information on travel visa requirements between 134 countries in year 2004. The results suggest that higher administrative barriers to mobility between countries are associated with reduced bilateral knowledge flows, especially of recent knowledge, and this negative effect can persist for about 9 years. The persistent effect of ‘paper walls’ is asymmetric and a country’s ability to import knowledge is affected more by the administrative barriers of the knowledge-exporting country, suggesting that co-location plays an important role for successful transfer of knowledge.

Suggested Citation

  • Sultan Orazbayev, 2016. "International knowledge flows and the administrative barriers to mobility," Development Working Papers 410, Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano, University of Milano, revised 22 Dec 2016.
  • Handle: RePEc:csl:devewp:410
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Qinchang Gui & Chengliang Liu & DeBin Du, 2019. "The Structure and Dynamic of Scientific Collaboration Network among Countries along the Belt and Road," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 11(19), pages 1-17, September.
    2. Ma, Ding & Yu, Qian & Li, Jing & Ge, Mengni, 2021. "Innovation diffusion enabler or barrier: An investigation of international patenting based on temporal exponential random graph models," Technology in Society, Elsevier, vol. 64(C).
    3. Orazbayev, Sultan, 2017. "Immigration barriers and net brain drain," MPRA Paper 78058, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Kam C. Chan & Anna Fung & Hung‐Gay Fung & Jot Yau, 2020. "Coauthorship in academic journals: Implications for international collaboration and alliances," Managerial and Decision Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 41(7), pages 1162-1173, October.
    5. Rose, Michael E. & Georg, Co-Pierre, 2021. "What 5,000 acknowledgements tell us about informal collaboration in financial economics," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 50(6).
    6. Zhao, Zhenyue & Bu, Yi & Kang, Lele & Min, Chao & Bian, Yiyang & Tang, Li & Li, Jiang, 2020. "An investigation of the relationship between scientists’ mobility to/from China and their research performance," Journal of Informetrics, Elsevier, vol. 14(2).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    visa; diffusion of knowledge; academic mobility; skilled workers; immigration policy;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F10 - International Economics - - Trade - - - General
    • F29 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Other
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes
    • R10 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - General

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