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Migration, Openness and the Global Preconditions of 'Smart Development'

66 Pages Posted: 11 Dec 2011  

Arno Tausch

University of Innsbruck - Department of Political Science; Budapest University of Economic Sciences and Public Administration

Almas Heshmati

Sogang University; Jönköping International Business School


In this article, we present a first empirical reflection on 'smart development,' its measurement, possible 'drivers' and 'bottlenecks.' We first provide cross-national data on how much ecological footprint is used in the nations of the world system to 'deliver' a given amount of democracy, economic growth, gender equality, human development, research and development, and social cohesion. To this end, we first developed UNDP-type performance indicators on these six main dimensions of development and on their combined performance. We then show the non-linear regression trade-offs between ecological footprints per capita on these six dimensions of development and their combined performance index. The residuals from these regressions are our new measures of smart development: a country experiences smart development, if it achieves a maximum of development with a minimum of ecological footprint. We then look at the cross-national drivers and bottlenecks of this 'smart development' and compare their predictive power using stepwise regression procedures. Apart from important variables and indicators, derived from sociological dependency and world systems theories, we also test the predictive power of several other predictors as well. Our estimates underline the enormous importance of the transfer of resources from the center to the periphery, brought about by migration, with huge statistical observed positive effects of received worker remittances on smart human development, Happy Life Years, smart gender justice, smart R&D, and both formulations of the smart development index.

Keywords: index numbers and aggregation, environment and development, environment and trade, smart development, sustainability, environmental accounts and accounting, environmental equity, population growth, international migration, remittances

JEL Classification: C43, F22, F24, Q56

Suggested Citation

Tausch, Arno and Heshmati , Almas, Migration, Openness and the Global Preconditions of 'Smart Development'. IZA Discussion Paper No. 6169. Available at SSRN:

Arno Tausch (Contact Author)

University of Innsbruck - Department of Political Science ( email )

Universitätsstrasse 15
Innsbruck, Tirol 6020

Budapest University of Economic Sciences and Public Administration ( email )

Budapest H-1093

Almas Heshmati

Sogang University ( email )

Seoul 121-742
Korea, Republic of (South Korea)
0082-2-705-8771 (Phone)


Jönköping International Business School ( email )

Jönköping, 551 11

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