Intellectual Property, the Immigration Backlog, and a Reverse Brain-Drain: America's New Immigrant Entrepreneurs, Part III
44 Pages Posted: 22 Aug 2007 Last revised: 23 Feb 2014
Date Written: August 22, 2007
The founders of the United States considered intellectual property worthy of a special place in the Constitution - "To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries." In today's knowledge-based economy, capturing value from intellectual capital and knowledge-based assets has gained even more importance. Global competition is no longer for the control of raw materials, but for this productive knowledge.
This paper is the third in a series of studies focusing on immigrants' contributions to the competitiveness of the U.S. economy. Earlier research revealed a dramatic increase in the contributions of foreign nationals to U.S. intellectual property over an eight-year period. In this paper, we offer a more refined measure of this change and seek to explain this increase with an analysis of the immigrant-visa backlog for skilled workers. The key finding from this research is that the number of skilled workers waiting for visas is significantly larger than the number that can be admitted to the United States. This imbalance creates the potential for a sizeable reverse brain-drain from the United States to the skilled workers' home countries.
Keywords: entrepreneur, immigrant, competitiveness, intellectual property
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