Research on skilled international migration has developed significantly in the last 25 years. This paper reviews progress in understanding the structuring power of transnational companies and international recruitment agencies in shaping global talent flows. It argues that four main strands in the research literature flow from this: work in international human resource management; analysis of the migration-development nexus; studies of city development associated with creative knowledge workers; and cultural geographies of expatriate identities. This paper interprets trends in research on these topics in relation to the wider issue of how some social scientists have become more reflexive about their engagement with research and thus have re-positioned the nature of what is considered to be the contemporary research agenda on skilled migration. This re-positioning is recognised to have strengths but also difficulties from a policy perspective.
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