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Skilled Immigration and the Employment Structures of U.S. Firms

48 Pages Posted: 16 Nov 2013  

Sari Pekkala Kerr

Wellesley College (WCW)

William R. Kerr

Harvard University - Entrepreneurial Management Unit

William Fabius Lincoln

Claremont McKenna College - Robert Day School of Economics and Finance

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Date Written: November 15, 2013

Abstract

We study the impact of skilled immigrants on the employment structures of U.S. firms using matched employer-employee data. Unlike most previous work, we use the firm as the lens of analysis to account for a greater level of heterogeneity and the fact that many skilled immigrant admissions are driven by firms themselves (e.g., the H-1B visa). OLS and IV specifications find rising overall employment of skilled workers with increased skilled immigrant employment by firm. Employment expansion is greater for younger natives than their older counterparts, and departure rates for older workers appear higher for those in STEM occupations compared to younger worker.

Keywords: Immigration, Employment, Firms, Age, Scientists, Engineers, Inventors, H-1B

JEL Classification: F15, F22, J44, J61, O31

Suggested Citation

Kerr, Sari Pekkala and Kerr, William R. and Lincoln, William Fabius, Skilled Immigration and the Employment Structures of U.S. Firms (November 15, 2013). Harvard Business School Entrepreneurial Management Working Paper No. 14-040. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2354963 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2354963

Sari Kerr

Wellesley College (WCW) ( email )

106 Central St.
Wellesley, MA 02181
United States

William Kerr (Contact Author)

Harvard University - Entrepreneurial Management Unit ( email )

Soldiers Field Road
Morgan 270C
Boston, MA 02163
United States

William Lincoln

Claremont McKenna College - Robert Day School of Economics and Finance ( email )

500 E. Ninth St.
Claremont, CA 91711-6420
United States

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