on 4 April 2014
Martin Ruhs (a migrant himself) has written a scholarly work which nevertheless is accessible to the interested lay reader. He sets out his case clearly and methodically for an enlightened view of migration - one that takes into account the objectives of the migrant-sending nations, as well as those of the migrant-receiving countries. The thrust of his argument is that idealistic notions of equal rights for migrants are impractical, and that it is far better for all parties concerned (migrant-sending nations, migrant-receiving countries and the migrants themselves) if one accepts that there has to be a trade off between openness and rights i.e. that migration policies which restrict some rights of migrants are likely (all other things being equal) to deliver the greatest overall benefits. For anyone who is confused by the arguments for and against immigration played out in the media, and who wants to understand better the driving forces behind various political positionings and economic rationalisations, I heartily recommend this book. Stick with it to the end. You will find deep insights that are rarely referenced in the media, and you will certainly better appreciate how migration policies, correctly formulated and with due reference to the needs of all concerned, can be major contributors to economic growth.
on 10 September 2015
I do not doubt that the author started his research with the best intentions. However, as history has taught us so many times before (and it still continues to do so), pure economic thought often leads to conclusions that are neither practical solutions nor sound political advice. We end up with a sophistically written book that is ... yes, what is it indeed? A blueprint for far-right politicians? Highly praised "provocative" thoughts might also end up in some extremist corners. The book's message is in perfect conformity with the policies of the UK government, to which Ruhs is an adviser, by the way.