The Baltic Region

2020 Vol. 12 № 1

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Migration of researchers in the Baltic region: a forecast and factors



The importance of this research relates to the need for increasing the human capital of Russian science and for assisting the spatial development of the country, particularly, its border areas. This study tests several hypotheses. The first one holds that the outflow of researchers will reduce over the next few years. Others concern factors affecting the number of researchers in the Russian Federation in general and its Baltic part in particular. These factors include salaries and workplace environment. Methodologically, the study draws on Russian and international sources on the migration of researchers and builds models of two types to trace connections and to produce forecasts, while calculating the emigration rate. The models of the first type describe how the amount of salary and workplace conditions affect the number of researchers. These are vector autoregression models built in the R software environment, using statistical time series. The models of the second type use Excel forecast function to carry out prospective evaluations of the number of researchers and migration rates. The study did not confirm the hypothesis that the reduction in the number of researchers was slowing down in Russia and St Petersburg in particular. Thus, the state measures aimed to preserve the human capital of national science will be insufficient to prevent either a decline in the number of researchers or their emigration in the near future. The article provides concrete recommendations for reforming the system of remuneration in research to reverse the negative trend.