Exceptional People – how migrants boost economies

26 October 2011

There is a direct connection between US immigration policy that is open to skilled workers and the rate of IT innovation. In fact, over half of those at the helm of start-ups in Silicon Valley have been migrants. These and other extraordinary facts have led Professor Ian Goldin to believe in the importance of allowing immigration of skilled workers in order to boost the economy.

His latest book Exceptional People: How Migration Shaped our World and Will Define our Future , written with Geoffrey Cameron and Meera Balarajan, has attracted much public and media interest over recent weeks.

Outlining the critical role that migration has played in human history, Goldin’s book highlights the circulation of ideas and technologies that has benefited communities and the movement of people across oceans and continents has fuelled economies. Goldin shows how migrants in today's world connect markets, fill labour gaps, and enrich social diversity. Migration also allows individuals to escape destitution, human rights abuses, and repressive regimes. Goldin argues that current migration policies are based on misconceptions and fears about migration's long-term contributions and social dynamics and looks at ways that future policies might allow societies to effectively reap migration's opportunities while managing the risks of the twenty-first century

In addition to reviews in the Financial Times, Wired, The Independent and many more, Ian Goldin has taken part in several public presentations of his work.

He outlined the major themes from his book to a packed Hong Kong Theatre at the London School of Economics on October 11, at a presentation chaired by Professor Eric Neumayer. Blackwell’s Bookshop in Oxford was the venue for a further presentation of the book by Ian Goldin on October 13. Here he stressed that in a world more interconnected than ever before, the number of people with the means and motivation to migrate will only increase. Read a blog from the event written by Blackwell’s Heather Kimpton.

Recent press coverage of the book