The Italian “brain drain” phenomenon is increasingly coming under the international spotlight, as it highlights many of Italy’s huge structural flaws.
It is estimated that around 200.000 Italians leave the country every year, although official statistics put the number at only 78.000 (latest update: 2012, source: Aire). Around half of them are people in their 20s or 30s, the most productive and innovative part of the society. The surge of Italian expatriates in 2012 has been the highest in decades: +30%, in comparison with 2011.
Why do they emigrate? Italy is a country ruled by old people, where it is very difficult to find someone under 40 years of age in a top-level positition. The value of the merit is largely disregarded: only people with the good “connections” go forward. It doesn’t help to have a good CV, or an international profile: corporative interests and family relations come before anything else. A sort of “mafia-society” (very well spread all over the country), which is heavily contributing to Italy’s decline.
On top of that, salaries for young people are under the EU average, the recruitment mechanism is mostly unprofessional (95% of the companies are SMEs, they normally haven’t a dedicated recruitment team), the career path is often discretional and not based on results, while the Welfare State for young unemployed is practically non-existent.
All this makes Italy a country below the common European standards. “No country for young people”, it is often said. And a country in decline, with one of the lowest growth rates in the EU.
“La Fuga dei Talenti“, a book by Sergio Nava published in 2009, is a crude exposé of this appalling situation: a unique collection of stories of young Italian expatriates, who were able to restart their life as soon as they left the country.
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INTERNATIONAL PRESS CORNER – “LA FUGA DEI TALENTI”
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+++VIDEO: WHY YOUNG ITALIANS DO EMIGRATE+++
(Courtesy of Due Monete)