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STEM Workers, H-1B Visas, and Productivity in US Cities

Listed author(s):
  • Giovanni Peri
  • Kevin Shih
  • Chad Sparber

Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) workers are fundamental inputs for innovation, the main driver of productivity growth. We identify the long-run effect of STEM employment growth on outcomes for native workers across 219 US cities from 1990 to 2010. We use the 1980 distribution of foreign-born STEM workers and variation in the H-1B visa program to identify supply-driven STEM increases across cities. Increases in STEM workers are associated with significant wage gains for college-educated natives. Gains for non-college-educated natives are smaller but still significant. Our results imply that foreign STEM increased total factor productivity growth in US cities.

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File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/679061
Download Restriction: Access to the online full text or PDF requires a subscription.

File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/679061
Download Restriction: Access to the online full text or PDF requires a subscription.

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Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal Journal of Labor Economics.

Volume (Year): 33 (2015)
Issue (Month): S1 ()
Pages: 225-255

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Handle: RePEc:ucp:jlabec:doi:10.1086/679061
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JOLE/

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