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

Vivek Wadhwa

Center for Entrepreneurship and Research Commercialization, Pratt School of Engineering; Stanford University - Arthur & Toni Rembe Rock Center for Corporate Governance

Guillermina Jasso

New York University (NYU) - Department of Sociology; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Ben A. Rissing

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Behavioral Policy Science (BPS)

G. Gereffi

Duke University - Department of Sociology - Director, Center on Globalization, Governance & Competitiveness

Richard B. Freeman

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); University of Edinburgh - School of Social and Political Studies; Harvard University; London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Centre for Economic Performance (CEP)

Date Written: August 22, 2007

Abstract

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

Suggested Citation

Wadhwa, Vivek and Jasso, Guillermina and Rissing, Ben A. and Gereffi, G. and Freeman, Richard B., Intellectual Property, the Immigration Backlog, and a Reverse Brain-Drain: America's New Immigrant Entrepreneurs, Part III (August 22, 2007). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1008366 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1008366

Vivek Wadhwa (Contact Author)

Center for Entrepreneurship and Research Commercialization, Pratt School of Engineering ( email )

Durham, NC 27708
United States

Stanford University - Arthur & Toni Rembe Rock Center for Corporate Governance ( email )

Crown Quadrangle 559 Nathan Ab
Stanford, CA 94305-8610
United States

Guillermina Jasso

New York University (NYU) - Department of Sociology ( email )

295 Lafayette Street, 4th Floor
New York, NY 10012-9605
United States
212-998-8368 (Phone)
212-995-4140 (Fax)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Ben A. Rissing

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Behavioral Policy Science (BPS) ( email )

Cambridge, MA
United States

Gary Gereffi

Duke University - Department of Sociology - Director, Center on Globalization, Governance & Competitiveness ( email )

Box 90088
Durham, NC 27708-0204
United States
919-660-5880 (Phone)
919-684-2855 (Fax)

Richard B. Freeman

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-868-3900 (Phone)
617-868-2742 (Fax)

University of Edinburgh - School of Social and Political Studies ( email )

Adam Ferguson Building
George Square
Edinburgh EH8 9LL
United Kingdom

Harvard University ( email )

Littauer Center
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-868-3900 (Phone)

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Centre for Economic Performance (CEP) ( email )

Houghton Street
London WC2A 2AE

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