Since the turn of the twenty-first century, developed countries have engaged in a race for the best and the brightest. States have been lowering barriers to entry and actively recruiting talent from abroad as the premium on human capital has increased in today’s knowledge economies and as demographic problems due to aging and low fertility are becoming a reality. What is interesting is that formerly immigration-adverse, non-traditional immigration states are now opening their doors to this pool of highly skilled migrants. From permanent residency to temporary visas not requiring employer sponsorship, states attempt to sweeten their offers to global talent so the latter would come to their shores. Even more interestingly, notwithstanding the current global economic turmoil, states continue to invite and retain well-educated migrants, while low-skilled migrant labor is turned away. This paper analyses immigration policies since the beginning of the global financial crisis in 2008. Based on this background, the paper presents a non-linear dynamic model where the attraction of global talent is influenced by both countries’ immigration policies and the stock of highly-educated migrants. The model is used to simulate the effects of loosened immigration restrictions on the accumulation of global talent.


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