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ERIC Number: ED504278
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2004-Dec-23
Pages: 44
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
Highly Skilled Labour and International Mobility in South America. OECD Science, Technology and Industry Working Papers, 2004/10
Barrere, Rodolfo; Luchilo, Lucas; Raffo, Julio
OECD Publishing (NJ1)
This paper presents the main trends in respect of the supply of human resources in science and technology (HRST) in Latin America and the international mobility of its highly skilled labour. This will be done through the identification of potential data sources, followed by a presentation of indicators drawn from these sources. In addition, a short section is devoted to the main policy aspects surrounding these issues. The section on policy issues will show that the main South American countries have in common a lack of strong or efficient policies for the migration of highly skilled human resources, although in recent years important changes have occurred in some of the countries of the region. Available information sources on highly skilled labour and international mobility in South American countries are similar to those from OECD countries as far as the main types of collected data is concerned. Potential sources are labour force surveys, population censuses, household surveys, data from the higher education system and from migration departments. However, the quality, coverage and availability of information is inferior to that of OECD countries. Science and technology tend to be marginal or absent in the government agendas in the region, which impedes obtaining basic and statistically reliable data. The available indicators show a massive expansion of the higher education sector, in numbers as well as in diversity of the offer of courses. The number of students enrolled in Latin America and the Caribbean increased from about 260 thousand students in 1950 to about 9 million in the year 2000. The number of graduates increased significantly as well, by around 50% between 1990 and 2001. However, this expansion was not accompanied by the creation of jobs requiring corresponding qualifications. For example, the United States employs 9 times as many researchers as Latin American and Caribbean countries. As a result, there has been a marked increase of unemployment of professionals, salaries have fallen and professionals and technicians are working in jobs for which they are overqualified. Concerning the emigration of highly skilled South American labour, the best information is available by looking at data sources in receiving countries, especially the United States. Data from these sources show that the mobility of highly skilled labour from South American countries is of relatively small magnitude, especially when compared with flows from Asian countries, and much less politically visible than other migratory trends, such as the magnitude and political impact of Mexican emigration to the United States. (Contains 35 footnotes, 11 figures, 13 tables, and a bibliography.)
OECD Publishing. 2, rue Andre Pascal, F-75775 Paris Cedex 16, France. Tel: +33-145-24-8200; Fax: +33-145-24-8500; Web site:
Publication Type: Numerical/Quantitative Data; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development
Identifiers - Location: South America