Bidding for Brains: Intellectual Property Rights and the International Migration of Knowledge Workers

26 Pages Posted: 29 Jun 2010

See all articles by Carol McAusland

Carol McAusland

University of British Columbia (UBC)

Peter Kuhn

University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Abstract

We introduce international mobility of knowledge workers into a model of Nash equilibrium IPR policy choice among countries. We show that governments have incentives to use IPRs in a bidding war for global talent, resulting in Nash equilibrium IPRs that can be too high, rather than too low, from a global welfare perspective. These incentives become stronger as developing countries grow in size and wealth, thus allowing them to prevent the 'poaching' of their 'brains' by larger, wealthier markets.

Keywords: intellectual property rights, development, brain drain, international labor migration

JEL Classification: F22, J6, O34

Suggested Citation

McAusland, Carol and Kuhn, Peter J., Bidding for Brains: Intellectual Property Rights and the International Migration of Knowledge Workers. IZA Discussion Paper No. 4936. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1631071

Carol McAusland (Contact Author)

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Peter J. Kuhn

University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) - Department of Economics ( email )

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