Decem: Financial Alternatives for Development Aid (8)

Written on October 24, 2007 by Max Oliva in Development

J.Pozuelo-Monfort, MPA candidate at Columbia University
The brain drain: a capital drain
The brain drain is a phenomenon that has increased with the internationalization of migratory flows, involves that part of the immigrant population considered qualified labor, and has a severely negative, destabilizing, and demolishing impact in the societies of the developing world, that see how their best prepared professionals educated with public money, leave for other countries, hoping for a better future. In 1998 the then president of South Africa Thabo Mbeki opened his speech about the African renaissance with the following words:
In our world in which the generation of new knowledge and its application to change the human condition is the engine which moves human society further away from barbarism, do we not have need to recall Africa’s hundreds of thousands of intellectuals back from their places of emigration in Western Europe and North America, to rejoin those who remain still within our shores. I dream of the day when these, the African mathematicians and computer specialists in Washington and New York, the African physicists, engineers, doctors, business managers and economists, will return from London and Manchester and Paris and Brussels to add to the African pool of brain power, to enquire into and find solutions to Africa’s problems and challenges, to open the African door to the world of knowledge, to elevate Africa’s place within the universe of research the information of new knowledge, education and information.
In an unequal world, the brain drain stresses the disparity of human resources between the two hemispheres of the globe, penalizes societies in great need of qualified professionals, in expense of an unfair profit that fundamentally benefits the welfare society, that is proud of being able to attract the talent of the world, granting it an opportunity to move forward, without thinking of the collateral damage that such migration of talent has in the departure countries, that see and are incapable of stopping an unfair and unrewarded leak of talent and skills.
Continue reading Decem 08


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