September 2017

IZA DP No. 11026: The 'Gravity' of Quality: Research Quality and Universities' Attractiveness in Italy

Massimiliano Bratti, Stefano Verzillo

revised version published as 'The 'gravity' of quality: research quality and the attractiveness of universities in Italy' in: Regional Studies, 2019, published online 07 Feb 2019

This paper investigates whether or not research quality is significantly associated with a university's ability to attract students from other provinces in Italy. First university enrolments of students over the period 2003–2011 are regressed on several universities' research quality indicators computed from different bibliometric databases (ISI-Thompson, Scopus-Elsevier and Google Scholar) using fixed effects-gravity models. Our estimates suggest that improving research quality may be an effective way of reducing 'brain drain' from southern Italy.