Home Sweet Home
Using Denmark as a case example, Home Sweet Home looks at the context for immigration in the new millenium in order to account for the increased flow of ‘human capital’ across the globe.
Skilled and educated immigrants explore the opportunities of a world with no frontiers. They are young, full of initiative, and hunt out the best opportunities. Women or men, black or white – good minds are in demand.
For thirty years Europeans devoted all their efforts to keeping out undesirable immigrants – the poor and the illegal. Meanwhile the Americans have devoted theirs to attracting immigrants with skills and/or education. Today one postgraduate in ten in the USA comes from a developing country, enticed there by low taxes, good career prospects and the promise of US citizenship.
The most far-sighted European politicians are attempting a new kind of welcome: open the doors to the brainy immigrants, close them on the poor and persecuted. Will Europe succeed in this double game?
Europe depends on immigration if it is to maintain its standards of living. Europe is already short of 1.7 million IT experts, for example, and the lack of educated labour is only going to get bigger. The EU Commission is talking about a European skills gap. Our hospitals are short of doctors and even greengrocers need IT people. Meanwhile more and more well-educated Europeans are choosing to live in the USA because of better career opportunities and higher salaries.