Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity



August 27, 2009

Skill Flow: A Fundamental Reconsideration of Skilled-Worker Mobility and Development - Working Paper 180

The emigration of skilled workers from developing countries is often referred to as brain drain and considered something that should be limited. In this paper, resident fellow Michael Clemens takes the term to task and shows instead that a more open skill flow—a more accurate and neutral label—would both benefit home countries and guarantee workers the freedom that is the hallmark of development.

May 25, 2009

Migrants Count: Five Steps Toward Better Migration Data

In this CGD report, the Commission on International Migration Data for Development Research and Policy presents their five recommendations to remedy the lack of good data on migration and its effects on development. The recommendations are politically and technically practical and would allow countries to greatly improve their migration data at low cost, and with existing mechanisms. The first step: ask basic census questions and make the data publicly available.

Commission on International Migration Data for Development Research and Policy
May 20, 2009

Blunt Instruments: On Establishing the Causes of Economic Growth - Working Paper 171

Economists often use instrumental variables to demonstrate a causal relationship between some trait of a country and economic growth. In this new analysis, Samuel Bazzi and Michael Clemens show that a variety of instrumental variables used in top economics journals have severe but hidden limitations. They present three guidelines to improve future empirical studies of growth determinants.


Samuel Bazzi and Michael Clemens