Can Brain Drain Justify Immigration Restrictions?

Ethics 123 (1):427-455 (2012)

Abstract

This article considers one seemingly compelling justification for immigration restrictions: that they help restrict the brain drain of skilled workers from poor states. For some poor states, brain drain is a severe problem, sapping their ability to provide basic services. Yet this article finds that justifying immigration restrictions on brain drain grounds is far from straightforward. For restrictions to be justified, a series of demanding conditions must be fulfilled. Brain drain does provide a successful argument for some immigration restrictions, but it is an argument that fails to justify restrictions beyond a small minority of cases.

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Author's Profile

Kieran Oberman
London School of Economics

References found in this work

Turning the Trolley.Judith Jarvis Thomson - 2008 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 36 (4):359-374.
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Reasonable Partiality Towards Compatriots.David Miller - 2005 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 8 (1-2):63-81.
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Utilitarianism, Integrity and Partiality.Elizabeth Ashford - 2000 - Journal of Philosophy 97 (8):421.

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Citations of this work

Immigration as a Human Right.Kieran Oberman - 2016 - In Sarah Fine & Lea Ypi (eds.), Migration in Political Theory: The Ethics of Movement and Membership. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 32-56.
Territorial Exclusion: An Argument Against Closed Borders.Daniel Weltman - 2021 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 19 (3):257-90.
Justice in Immigration.David Miller - 2015 - European Journal of Political Theory 14 (4):391-408.

View all 31 citations / Add more citations

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