The Effect of Brain Drain on Economic Growth of Developing Countries

The process of skilled international migration from developing countries to developed ones has considerably grown during two recent decades. In 1970s, most economists agreed brain drain resulted in reducing human capital stock and thus hurt developing economies. However, according to the studies of the recent decades, positive effects of brain drain on the source economies have been controversial. In this paper, it is tried to explore the effect of brain drain on economic growth of source developing countries. More than 90 percent of skilled emigrants of the world live in 30 of OECD countries, while more than 90 percent out of this live in the U.S., England, Canada, German, Australia and France. Accordingly, this paper explores the effect of brain drain on economic growth of 79 developing countries where skilled people have immigrated to the target countries during 1991 to 2004. To this purpose, the paper has examined the effect by specifying a panel growth regression model. The empirical results have shown that the effect of brain drain on human capital stock of the source countries has been negative and significant, while its direct effect on the economic growth of such countries has not been statistically significant. It implies that brain drain reduces the economic growth of the selected developing countries by reducing their human capital stock.
Journal of Economic Growth and Development Research, Volume:1 Issue: 2, 2011
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