Then and Now: America's New Immigrant Entrepreneurs, Part VII

32 Pages Posted: 10 Oct 2012 Last revised: 18 Nov 2012

Vivek Wadhwa

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

AnnaLee Saxenian

University of California, Berkeley - School of Information

Francis Daniel Siciliano II

Stanford Law School

Date Written: October 1, 2012

Abstract

The period of unprecedented expansion of immigrant-led entrepreneurship that characterized the 1980s and 1990s has come to a close. Today, the growth rate of immigrant-founded companies nationwide, at 24.3 percent, has plateaued. In the high-tech hub of Silicon Valley, the proportion of immigrant-founded companies has dropped from 52.4 percent during 1995-2005 to 43.9 percent during 2006-2012.

Immigrant founders of engineering and technology companies have employed roughly 560,000 workers and generated an estimated $63 billion dollars in sales during this time. While the rate of growth of immigrant entrepreneurship has stagnated, these numbers nonetheless underscore the continuing importance of high-skilled immigrants to the maintenance and expansion of the national economy. These findings are interestingly complex, since the two major skilled-immigrant groups — Indian and Chinese — are starting companies at higher rates than they did previously. Historically and today, the United States continues to benefit directly from the contributions of such immigrants. Far from expendable, high-skilled immigrants will remain a critical asset for maintaining U.S. competitiveness in the global economy.

Keywords: immigrant, immigration, entrepreneur, HSI, high skill, highly skilled, policy, economy

Suggested Citation

Wadhwa, Vivek and Saxenian, AnnaLee and Siciliano, Francis Daniel, Then and Now: America's New Immigrant Entrepreneurs, Part VII (October 1, 2012). Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation Research Paper; Stanford Public Law Working Paper No. 2159875; Rock Center for Corporate Governance at Stanford University Working Paper No. 127. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2159875 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2159875

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

AnnaLee Saxenian

University of California, Berkeley - School of Information ( email )

102 South Hall
Berkeley, CA 94720-4600
United States

Francis Daniel Siciliano II

Stanford Law School ( email )

559 Nathan Abbott Way
Stanford, CA 94305-8610
United States

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