Brain Drain, Educational Quality and Immigration Policy: Impact on Productive Human Capital in Source and Host Countries, with Canada as a Case Study
With the 1967 reform, Canada's immigration policy changed from a country-preference system to a points system. The latter provides points according to applicants' education level but abstracts from the quality of their education. This paper considers the points system, the country-preference system, as well as a system that includes both educational quantity and quality and is termed the "𝑞2 points system." It focuses on the policies' impact on immigrants' average productive human capital â the product of educational quality and quantity â or skill level, 𝑆𝑥 (for policy 𝑥). It shows, among others, that i) 𝑆𝑥 is greater under the 𝑞2 system than under the points system (𝑆𝑞 > 𝑆ℎ); ii) a switch from a points system to a 𝑞2 system results in a human capital gain or net brain gain for Country 1 (the high-education quality country) and a loss or net brain drain for Country 2; iii) 𝑆𝑥 is greater under the country-preference system than under the points system (𝑆𝑝 > 𝑆ℎ); iv) whether 𝑆𝑥 is greater under the 𝑞2 or the country-preference system is ambiguous, with 𝑆𝑞 >(
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