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The economic importance of migration explained in evolutionary terms

There was a fascinating paper delivered to the Mont Pelerin Society by Prof Peter Whybrow. He looked at the great migrations of humankind, starting with the exodus of homo sapiens from Africa some 50,000 years ago. Prof Whybrow was looking at the gene associated with risk-taking, creativity and opportunism – what might be dubbed the “entrepreneurial” gene. It is more prevalent in populations which journeyed farther. It is prevalent today in migrants. We have long thought that it takes a self-selecting group to take itself to another part of the world to seek to better themselves; now there is a scientific basis. We know that a high proportion of start-up and entrepreneurial businesses derive from migrants or their children. It looks very much as though the economic consequences of migrant populations might have been derived from evolutionary origins.


One Response

  1. It would be just one of many ideas if migration was driven by entrepreneurial flair but it is more likely to be driven by starvation or life threatening events. Survival is a basic drive or instinct in all life on earth including plants, sea life and even bacteria. The human race moves to ‘ pastures new ‘ in more ways than one and always will.

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