This research was conducted to study the factors that influence the intention of educated Malaysian youths to emigrate. The phenomenon of the emigration of highly skilled Malaysians has become a hot topic among policy makers, private and public industry players. This is because as a developing country that is aiming to achieve the status of a developed country, the retention of its educated youths is one of the key factors that can assist the country in reaching this goal. Furthermore, with the decrease in the birth rate and an aging population, Malaysia’s supply of young local talent is badly needed. Thus, the main objectives of the research are to identify the primary factors that influence the young talent to “brain drain”, that is determining what are the factors that affect the decision of the young talents to stay or work abroad. A total of 300 usable questionnaires were collected from the final year students of public universities in Sarawak, East Malaysia. The results show that both push and pull factors play crucial roles in influencing the brain drain activities among the young talent, while career prospects are the dominant factor that causes the diaspora of the skilled people to emigrate. This study is beneficial because, by understanding the intention behind the aspiration to emigrate among this demographic, this can lead to better understanding on policies to reduce the brain drain phenomena in Malaysia.
Keywords: Migration Intention, Brain Drain, Educated Youths, Human Capital