This blog contains postings of news clippings that concerns Overseas Filipinos, Migration and my diary of important events as an Overseas Filipino Worker in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia – Bong Amora
Approaches such as flexible visa schemes, which encourage emigrants to make return visits home, may ease brain drain in the short term. But, in the end, only through socio-economic development and capacity building can countries hope to provide opportunities to lure back those who have left and keep others from leaving. That’s the message conveyed in an article examining the migration of knowledge workers in the latest issue of the TWAS Newsletter on Migration and Science.
The main ‘push factors’ motivating scientists to go abroad are lack of career opportunities and low wages; relative weakness of higher education institutions; insufficient infrastructure and funding for science and research; and political instability and corruption. If developing countries are to discourage their best and brightest from emigrating, these fundamental problems will need to be addressed.
Brain drain is a global phenomenon that has even affected developed countries like the UK, which loses native-born workers to the US, Canada and Australia. But it is developing countries that bear the brunt of the problem.
Africa, in particular, continues to be hard hit by the loss of its knowledge workers, including scientists and health professionals. According to the World Bank, the continent sees some 80,000 highly skilled people a year migrate to work overseas. The International Organization for Migration (IOM) estimates that, since 1990, Africa has been losing some 20,000 doctors and academics every year.
It is estimated that one-third of all African scientists live and work in developed countries. Because most African countries finance students’ higher education, brain drain represents a double loss: not only is the continent losing many of its ‘best and brightest’, but the money spent on their education is lost as well.
The emigration of doctors and nurses to the North is a particular cause of concern, as it can significantly compromise a country’s capacity to deliver health care. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), more than 13,000 doctors trained in sub-Saharan Africa are practising in Australia, Britain, Canada and the US.
The migration of intellectual workers and skilled personnel from the less developed countries, particularly from the poor countries, to the more developed or advanced countries termed as Brain-Drain is a global phenomenon. However, it hurts more, particularly in the area of Science and Technology, the progress of poor and developing countries and is a very serious matter which such countries must attend on urgent basis.
Most countries of OIC belong to the less developed part of the world and therefore, OIC is confronted with this serious problem and needs constant attention to deal with.
In this report, the problem, as in world over, particularly for OIC countries is briefly discussed describing the reasons and the possible remedial measures. Some aspects of OIC countries are also discussed with useful measures taken to deal with this problem. Examples of ICTP (Trieste, Italy) and CERN (Geneva, Switzerland) are mentioned as useful measures to arrest Brain Drain. Some steps taken by ISESCO, COMSTECH, IDB and other OIC organizations as well as OIC-countries and regions like Pakistan, Egypt, Turkey, North Africa and Middle East etc. to arrest Brain-Drain are also mentioned.
In the end some high lights and main suggestions are listed which OIC could take up to tackle this important problem of preventing the Brain-Drain.
An interesting correlation of scientific productivity with economic competitiveness has been observed. States which have made maximum contribution to international research such as Turkey, Malaysia, Iran and Saudi Arabia have also experienced growth in their exports. In most OIC countries however, economic activities are based on extraction and exploitation of natural resources rather than use of knowledge and technology for value addition. Only Turkey and Malaysia have managed to achieve diversification in their economies i-e a gradual shift from resource based to knowledge based production of products and processes.
Prof Dr Atta-ur-Rahman, TI, SI HI, NI, is a leading scientist and scholar in the field of organic chemistry from Pakistan, especially renowned for his research in the various areas relating to natural product chemistry. With over 700 publications in the field of his expertise, he is also credited for reviving the higher education and research practices in Pakistan . Taken from Wikipedia