From "brain drain" to "brain gain"

inspired by ImpacTalk

How from brain drain we will reach the brain gain, namely return of valuable human resources?

Moderator :

Costas Papachlimintzos, Journalist


Aristotle Tziampiris, Professor of International Relations, University of Piraeus

May Zanni, Political Analyst, Co-Founder & President, Women Act

Konstantinos Kyranakis, Co-founder of the "BrainGain" initiative

To watch the full episode

From "brain drain" to "brain gain"

The 10-year period of economic crisis has led more than 400,000 people to emigrate. The core feature of this wave of escape was the high level of education and expertise of the majority of those who sought better living conditions and careers abroad. Postgraduate and doctoral degrees "traveled" overseas and the term "brain drain" entered our lives, as a phenomenon with serious economic and social consequences for our country.  

But what is happening today? Is "brain drain" still evolving at the same pace? How can it be stopped or rather how can it be reversed so that loss will turn intoprofit? How can the knowledge and experience gained by young scientists abroad be used to boost the country's economy? What are the incentives that can be provided to them in order to implement the skills acquired in other countries to the development of Greek organisations and companies? How from brain drain we will reach the brain gain, namely return of valuable human resources?

In this Experts Talk, journalist, Costas Papachlimintzos, discusses with Professor of International Relations, University of Piraeus, Aristotle Tziampiris, Political Analyst, Co-Founder & President of Women Act, May Zannis, and MP, co-founder of the "Brain Gain" initiative, Konstantinos Kyranakis on what has happened so far, how is the situation today and how can this new kind of migration work for the benefit of society and the economy.  

Costas Papachlimintzos

Costas Papachlimintzos studied law at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens and political science & public administration at University College London (UCL). The subject of his dissertation was the absorption of the EU Cohesion Fund of the Community Support Framework by the Greek public administration. He has worked as a journalist for the newspapers "Eleftheros Typos", "Veto", "AthensNews" and "Dimokratia". He has also worked as an advisor in the Ministries of Education, Shipping & Island Policy and Administrative Reforms.

Since October 2020, he belongs to the staff of ERT, presenting the daily news program "Syndeseis" together with Alexandra Kaimenou.

Aristotle Tziampiris
Professor of International Relations, University of Piraeus

Dr. Aristotle Tziampiris, whose primary scholarly focus is on international relations, energy diplomacy and Greek history, is Professor of International Relations and Director of the MSc Program in Energy: Strategy, Law & Economics at the Department of International and European Studies of the University of Piraeus. He is also the President of the Council for International Relations-Greece (CFIR-GR).
Dr. Tziampiris was Chair of the Department of International and European Studies (2015-2020) and is Visiting [Non-Resident] Scholar at the Center on Public Diplomacy of the University of Southern California (USC), Standing Fellow at New York University's Remarque Institute, an Academic Advisor to the Hellenic American Leadership Council (HALC), a member of the Executive Academic Board of the European Security and Defence College (ESDC), a member of the academic committee of the Eastern-Mediterranean Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence in Research and Teaching of European Studies, a founding member of the Israeli-Hellenic Forum, Honorary Supporter of the BenakiMuseum and “Champion” of Women Act (Greece).

May Zanni
Political Analyst, Co-Founder & President, Women Act

May Zanni is a political scientist currently working as a Special Advisor at the Secretariat of the Prime Minister of the Hellenic Republic. She is the President and Co-founder of Women Act, a Greek NGO on empowering women in leadership positions in the public sphere.

May was born in Athens, Greece and then moved to the United Kingdom where she obtained her BA in History and Politics from Queen Mary College, University of London, her MSc in European Politics from BirkbeckCollege, University of London and her MSc in Politics of Empire and Post-Imperialism from the London School of Economics.

She has interned at the House of Commons in London, the European Parliament in Brussels and UNESCO in Paris.  May worked in Brussels for the Trans European Policy Studies Association (TEPSA) and in Paris for the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC). Upon her return to Greece she was employed as an advisor to the Minister for Justice, to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and then worked as a political analyst in the private sector.

May was the Deputy International Secretary of New Democracy from 2011-2016 and since then is the Deputy Secretary of Strategic Planning & Communication of New Democracy. In 2011 she represented Greece at the State Department IVLP program “Women in Public Service”. In 2012 she completed the Harvard John F Kennedy School of Government program “Public Leaders in SouthEastEurope” in Istanbul, Turkey. She has one daughter, Olympia.

Konstantinos Kyranakis
Co-founder of the "BrainGain" initiative

Konstantinos Kyranakis is 34 years old, is a Member of the National Parliament in Greece and Co-founder of the BrainGain Initiative.

He holds a Bachelor degree in Law from the University of Athens and a MA in Strategic Communication from the American College of Greece. In 2017, he was selected by Georgetown University’s annual Leadership Program in Foreign Relations. 

Konstantinos has worked in digital communication since 2008 as a freelancer. In 2013  he was elected president of the Youth of the European People's Party. He is the co-founder of  the Transatlantic Youth Summit and Member of the  International Republican Institute.

In 2016 he was appointed Deputy Spokesperson of New Democracy and  in 2017 he was part of the 30 under 30 list for Forbes Magazine Europe. In 2019, he was elected Member of Parliament with New Democracy.