By Norm Matloff
Huffington Post, February 3, 2017
The industry lobbyists’ ace-in-the-hole argument is that if they can’t hire more H-1Bs, they’ll ship the work overseas. But for projects on which H-1Bs are hired in the U.S., face-to-face interaction (between themselves and their American coworkers) is crucial. That is why employers bring H-1Bs to the U.S. in the first place rather than sending the work abroad, where the wages are even cheaper.
Aside from the reduced wages and reduced job opportunities H-1B and EB inflict on American workers, there is a broader impact that is far worse. We should of course support facilitating the immigration of “the best and the brightest.” But research performed at the University of Michigan and Rutgers University, as well as my own work for the Economic Policy Institute, shows that the former foreign students now in the U.S. workforce tend to be weaker than their American peers. On a per capita basis, the former foreign students in computer science file fewer patents, are less likely to work in research and development and have degrees from less selective U.S. universities.
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