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The Brain Drain and the World Distribution of Income and Population Growth

  • Andrew Mountford
  • Hillel Rapoport

Over the last two decades immigration policies in OECD economies have become increasingly selective and the rate of skilled migration from low income economies has risen markedly. This paper analyzes the theoretical implications of this shift in migration patterns for the growth and distribution of world income and population using a model with endogenous education, fertility and migration decisions in both the sending and receiving economies. It shows that Brain Drain migration may cause fertility to fall and human capital accumulation to increase in both the sending and receiving economies. It also shows that the world economy may converge to a special kind of core-periphery equilibrium where increasing inequality between countries is fueled by Brain Drain migration but where, nonetheless, the welfare of agents in both the core and the periphery is increased. Thus Brain Drain migration may increase inequality between countries at the same time as reducing world poverty and increasing world growth.

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File URL: http://degit.sam.sdu.dk/papers/degit_11/C011_048.pdf
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Paper provided by DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade in its series DEGIT Conference Papers with number c011_048.

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Length: 27 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:deg:conpap:c011_048
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  1. Gould, Eric D & Moav, Omer & Weinberg, Bruce A, 2001. " Precautionary Demand for Education, Inequality, and Technological Progress," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 6(4), pages 285-315, December.
  2. Michel Beine & Frédéric Docquier & Hillel Rapoport, 2002. "Brain Drain and LDCs' Growth: Winners and Losers," Working Papers 2002-08, Bar-Ilan University, Department of Economics.
  3. Deardorff, Alan V, 1973. "The Gains from Trade in and out of Steady-state Growth," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 25(2), pages 173-91, July.
  4. Moav, Omer, 2001. "Cheap Children and the Persistence of Poverty," CEPR Discussion Papers 3059, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Frederic Docquier & Hillel Rapoport, 2007. "Skilled migration: the perspective of developing countries," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0710, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  6. Robert J. Barro & Jong-Wha Lee, 2000. "International Data on Educational Attainment Updates and Implications," NBER Working Papers 7911, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Bhagwati, Jagdish & Hamada, Koichi, 1974. "The brain drain, international integration of markets for professionals and unemployment : A theoretical analysis," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 19-42, April.
  8. Benabou, R., 1996. "Inequality and Growth," Working Papers 96-22, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  9. François Bourguignon & Christian Morrisson, 2001. "Inequality among World Citizens : 1820-1992," DELTA Working Papers 2001-18, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  10. Wolfgang Keller, 2001. "International Technology Diffusion," NBER Working Papers 8573, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Susanto Basu & David N. Weil, 1996. "Appropriate Technology and Growth," NBER Working Papers 5865, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Oded Galor & Omer Moav, 1998. "Ability Biased Technological Transition, Wage Inequality, and Economic Growth," Working Papers 98-14, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  13. Jean-Pierre Vidal, 1998. "The effect of emigration on human capital formation," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 11(4), pages 589-600.
  14. Azariadis, Costas & Drazen, Allan, 1990. "Threshold Externalities in Economic Development," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 105(2), pages 501-26, May.
  15. Michel Beine & Frédéric Docquier & Hillel Rapoport, 2001. "Brain drain and economic growth: theory and evidence," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/10449, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  16. Findlay, Ronald, 1978. "Relative Backwardness, Direct Foreign Investment, and the Transfer of Technology: A Simple Dynamic Model," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 92(1), pages 1-16, February.
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