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Investigating the relationship between job satisfaction and academic brain drain: the Italian case

Benedetto Torrisi () and Giuseppe Pernagallo
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Benedetto Torrisi: University of Catania

Scientometrics, 2020, vol. 124, issue 2, No 6, 925-952

Abstract: Abstract This work aims to show whether working in a good organisational atmosphere (job satisfaction) in the academic sector influences the propensity to migrate. This theory was tested using two surveys administered to Italian researchers abroad (IRA) and Italian researchers in Italy (IRI). The main purposes were: first, to study the relation among job satisfaction, quality of life and the propensity to migrate between IRA and IRI; second, to quantify how job satisfaction influences the academic brain drain propensity and the quality of life. Our research reveals a dual state of Italian academic job satisfaction. Those researchers who live abroad report satisfaction for all the four dimensions of job satisfaction, which influences positively their quality of life and decreases their propensity to return to Italy. In contrast, researchers that remain in Italy adapt to the system and record negative perception of job satisfaction, low quality of life and show propensity to emigrate abroad. The Italian academic environment must improve its status with an emphasis on organisational and job satisfaction. This can be done through a direct intervention in organisational administration favouring streamlined procedures, functional research productivity, harmony of academic standards and a meritocratic reward process.

Keywords: Academic brain drain; Academic job satisfaction; Education policy; Human capital; Ordered probit (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I28 I29 J24 O15 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1007/s11192-020-03509-2

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Handle: RePEc:spr:scient:v:124:y:2020:i:2:d:10.1007_s11192-020-03509-2