Theory, Evidence, and Implications

Frédéric Docquier, Hillel Rapoport

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

1 Scopus citations


This chapter reviews the channels through which skilled emigration can affect the source countries. Recent literature suggests that remittances, return migration, diaspora externalities, and network effects favouring international transactions and technology diffusion, as well as brain gain channels, may compensate the sending countries for their loss of human capital. The chapter divides these channels into a 'human capital', 'screening selection', 'productivity', and 'institutional' channels, and analyse the links between brain drain and remittances. The development of a partial equilibrium model allows them to combine these various channels in an integrated setting. They quantify the costs and gains of the brain drain for developing countries and analyse how these balance out. In most cases, simulations suggest that at a macroeconomic level, the brain drain may generate short run and long run positive net gains for many developing countries, while adverse overall impacts are found only in a small number of countries exhibiting very high skilled emigration rates.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBrain Drain and Brain Gain
Subtitle of host publicationThe Global Competition to Attract High-Skilled Migrants
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780191742095
ISBN (Print)9780199654826
StatePublished - 20 Sep 2012

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Fondazione Rodolfo Debenedetti 2012. All rights reserved.


  • Brain drain
  • Developing countries
  • Diaspora externalities and network effects
  • Emigration
  • Highly skilled migrants
  • Remittances
  • Return migration


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