Accessible Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter March 12, 2016

Solving Problems Associated with the Brain Drain: Fair Contracts, Legitimate States, and Appropriate Policy Measures

Gillian Brock


Several commentators focus substantial criticism on my proposals that require skilled citizens in poor developing states to assist those countries for short periods or with additional taxation measures. In particular, they are skeptical about any so-called fair contracts between governments and students that can defensibly bind students to perform service and pay taxes. They worry that the conditions and terms of these contracts cannot make for morally binding agreements. In Section 1 I review some key points from my overall argument strategy, indicating why the mechanism of fair contracts is a good focal point within the context of the debate. In Section 2 I consider and respond to several of the criticisms that aim to undermine the idea that students can enter into fair contracts that cover compulsory service and taxation programs. In Section 3, I consider prospects and pitfalls concerning extending some core lines of argument, mainly in response to Lea Ypi’s creative ideas.


I thank the referees and editors of this volume, in particular Eszter Kollar and Michael Schefczyk, for all their conscientious work producing a splendid collection of ideas about how to address ongoing significant problems associated with the brain drain. I am also very grateful to all the authors for their rich commentaries. I hope this response article promotes further innovative ideas on these important issues.

I cannot possibly respond to all the many interesting comments in the allocated space, so I have selected a few significant arguments that share some thematic unity for discussion here.

Published Online: 2016-3-12
Published in Print: 2016-4-1

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