Transnational Brain Gain

From Short-term Projects to Long-term Structures


  • Herr Detlef Gürtler Germany Trade & Invest (GTAI)



In Germany, the demand for labor immigration will increase significantly for at least two decades. To meet this demand, an immigration influx like in the peak years of 2015/16 (from Syria) or 2022 (from Ukraine) has to become the new normal. Neither the German society nor the political system are prepared for those numbers, especially not for extra-European immigration – a mismatch that leads to an increasing risk of severe economic underperformance. To reduce the gap between business needs and societal acceptance, the author recommends a combination of widespread small and/or experimental projects with thorough and transparent evaluation, whenever possible under lab conditions. This approach could steepen the learning curve of all stakeholders and prepare the economy and society for the up-scaling of specific migration schemes that have proven to be successful. The Kingdom of Jordan would be an appropriate location for a labor lab platform because the country possesses a good fit of labor market conditions and institutional conditions – and also has an ideal combination of proximity and distance.


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How to Cite

Gürtler, D. (2023). Transnational Brain Gain: From Short-term Projects to Long-term Structures. Quarterly on Refugee Problems - AWR Bulletin, 62(4), 323–327.