Talent-competitiveness of Hungary – Decline without „Fleurs du Mal”

Kovács, O. (2016): Talent-competitiveness of Hungary – Decline without „Fleurs du Mal”. Society and Economy, Vol. 38., No. 4. pp. 537–558 DOI: 10.1556/204.2016.38.4.6

This paper debunks the popular belief about the world class performance of the Hungarian education system. In so doing, the paper offers some ammunition to better understand Hungary’s position in the IMD World Talent Report 2015 (IMD WTR 2015). Firstly, it gives a brief overview of the methodology of the IMD WTR by highlighting its main features. Secondly, it presents the 2015 ranking and puts the focus on Hungary’s withering talent competitiveness. The paper conveys the message that there will be no significant improvements without strategic governmental actions, i.e. the flowers of decay, Fleurs du Mal, will not arise spontaneously. The paper is a clarion call for an overarching and consistent reform package in the education system to foster talent utilisation. However, the aforementioned package is likely to be insufficient unless the economic policy addresses the relevant shortcomings of the Hungarian innovation ecosystem that is to vise talents rathen than deliberating them.