Wednesday, April 24, 2013

My high skill visa report is now out at EPI

Guestworkers in the high-skill U.S. labor market: An analysis of supply, employment, and wage trends
By Hal Salzman, Daniel Kuehn, and B. Lindsay Lowell

We just finished a webinar for reporters, which went really well. Some big names in science reporting were there, someone from Bloomberg, and also WSJ. So hopefully this will get good press.

An important note I've mentioned before here: some groups of people are inevitably going to use this to advocate for fewer guestworker visas (indeed, it's the perspective of at least one of my co-authors). I think that's only one of at least two possible conclusions to draw from this work. The other position, which I hold, is that liberal immigration policy is a good thing and what is bad about high skill guestworker programs is that they pick and choose what sorts of immigrant workers have an easier time coming to the U.S., often as a result of bad analysis around alleged labor shortages. I mentioned this on the webinar and hopefully that shines through. Our presentation for reporters pretty solidly focused on the labor shortages question and the data on the guestworker flows.

I'm sure I'll talk more about this later, and share links to any commentary that comes out, but I've got a few other things to do right now.

1 comment:

  1. [sarcasm]Yes but but but but .... If there already is an adequate supply of STEM workers and wages show that the demand for STEM workers is not going up much, why on earth are our business and political leaders constantly blatthering about the need to encourage kids to get education in STEM fields? Give me an answer involving economics, please.

    Secondly, judging from pay rates and other compensation, the greatest job shortages in the USA are obviously found at high level business management and financial occupations. I don't understand why economists aren't investigating the serious lack of qualified applicants for such positions and calling for reform. Surely we'd all be better off if the USA admitted say 100,000 MBA holders as immigrants every year. Whyt aren't you guys writing papers on this pressing issue?

    (No [/sarcasm] label at the close, since it's clear the opportunity for sarcasm here will never end.)


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