Brain Drain in the Age of Mass Migration: Does Relative Inequality Explain Migrant Selectivity?

53 Pages Posted: 26 Jan 2012

See all articles by Yvonne Stolz

Yvonne Stolz

University of Tuebingen

Joerg Baten

University of Tuebingen

Date Written: January 26, 2012

Abstract

Brain drain is a core economic policy problem for many developing countries today. Does relative inequality in source and destination countries influence the brain-drain phenomenon? We explore human capital selectivity during the period 1820-1909.We apply age heaping techniques to measure human capital selectivity of international migrants. In a sample of 52 source and five destination countries we find selective migration determined by relative anthropometric inequality in source and destination countries. Other inequality measures confirm this. The results remain robust in OLS and Arellano-Bond approaches. We confirm the Roy-Borjas model of migrant self-selection. Moreover, we find that countries like Germany and UK experienced a small positive effect, because the less educated emigrated in larger numbers.

Keywords: international migration, labor markets, human capital, economic history

JEL Classification: F220, J400, I210, N300

Suggested Citation

Stolz, Yvonne and Baten, Joerg, Brain Drain in the Age of Mass Migration: Does Relative Inequality Explain Migrant Selectivity? (January 26, 2012). CESifo Working Paper Series No. 3705. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1992223

Yvonne Stolz

University of Tuebingen ( email )

Wilhelmstr. 19
72074 Tuebingen, Baden Wuerttemberg 72074
Germany

Joerg Baten (Contact Author)

University of Tuebingen ( email )

Wilhelmstr. 19
72074 Tuebingen, Baden Wuerttemberg 72074
Germany

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