The Guardian homeUniversities are a knowledge industry that imposes borders on movement and transfer at its own peril, says Abhinay Muthoo.
Imagine that you run one of the nation's most successful export industries. You produce one of the world's most sought-after cars. Designed by the world's best engineers, these models are so hot that you can't possibly keep up with demand. Even though you can offer the car to only carefully screened, potential buyers, you can live with that limitation. It only adds cachet. Business thrives.
Then the government changes the laws to make entering the showroom harder to do. Your customers will require more scrutiny before they are allowed to walk in to make their purchases. The same goes for your design engineers. Your most promising customers are put off. They decide they will try one of your competitor's excellent new models. The world-class engineers, uncertain over whether they can come to work and whether they will be allowed to remain, are recruited by more welcoming competitors elsewhere. Read more...