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Immigration and Ideas: What Did Russian Scientists "Bring" to the United States?

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  • Ina Ganguli

Abstract

This paper examines how high-skilled immigrants contribute to knowledge diffusion using a rich data set of Russian scientists and US citations to Soviet-era publications. Analysis of a panel of US cities and scientific fields shows that citations to Soviet-era work increased significantly with the arrival of immigrants. A difference-in-differences analysis with matched paper pairs also shows that after Russian scientists moved to the United States, citations to their Soviet-era papers increased relative to control papers. Both strategies reveal scientific field-specific effects. Ideas in high-impact papers and papers previously accessible to US scientists were the most likely to "spill over" to natives.

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  • Ina Ganguli, 2015. "Immigration and Ideas: What Did Russian Scientists "Bring" to the United States?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 33(S1), pages 257-288.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jlabec:doi:10.1086/679741
    DOI: 10.1086/679741
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    Cited by:

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    2. Ernest Miguelez & Claudia Noumedem Temgoua, 2020. "Inventor Migration and Knowledge Flows: A Two-Way Communication Channel ?," Post-Print hal-03097427, HAL.
    3. Ferrucci, Edoardo & Lissoni, Francesco, 2019. "Foreign inventors in Europe and the United States: Diversity and Patent Quality," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 48(9), pages 1-1.
    4. Azoulay, Pierre & Ganguli, Ina & Graff Zivin, Joshua, 2017. "The mobility of elite life scientists: Professional and personal determinants," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 46(3), pages 573-590.
    5. Bahar, Dany & Choudhury, Prithwiraj & Rapoport, Hillel, 2020. "Migrant inventors and the technological advantage of nations," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 49(9).
    6. Valentina DI IASIO & Ernest MIGUELEZ, 2021. "The ties that bind and transform: knowledge remittances, relatedness and the direction of technical change," Bordeaux Economics Working Papers 2021-13, Groupe de Recherche en Economie Théorique et Appliquée (GREThA).
    7. Cristelli, Gabriele & Lissoni, Francesco, 2020. "Free movement of inventors: open-border policy and innovation in Switzerland," MPRA Paper 107433, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Breschi, Stefano & Lawson, Cornelia & Lissoni, Francesco & Morrison, Andrea & Salter, Ammon, 2020. "STEM migration, research, and innovation," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 49(9).
    9. Olena Ivus & Alireza Naghavi & Larry D. Qiu, 2019. "Migration and Imitation," Development Working Papers 457, Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano, University of Milano.
    10. Miguelez, Ernest & Noumedem Temgoua, Claudia, 2020. "Inventor migration and knowledge flows: A two-way communication channel?," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 49(9).
    11. Francesco LISSONI, 2016. "Migration and Innovation Diffusion : An Eclectic Survey," Cahiers du GREThA (2007-2019) 2016-11, Groupe de Recherche en Economie Théorique et Appliquée (GREThA).
    12. Drivas, Kyriakos & Economidou, Claire & Karamanis, Dimitrios & Sanders, Mark, 2020. "Mobility of highly skilled individuals and local innovation activity," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 158(C).
    13. Roberta Capello & Camilla Lenzi, 2019. "The nexus between inventors’ mobility and regional growth across European regions," Journal of Geographical Systems, Springer, vol. 21(4), pages 457-486, December.
    14. Agrawal, Ajay & McHale, John & Oettl, Alexander, 2019. "Does scientist immigration harm US science? An examination of the knowledge spillover channel," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 48(5), pages 1248-1259.
    15. Yi Zhang & Xiaojing Cai & Caroline V. Fry & Mengjia Wu & Caroline S. Wagner, 2021. "Topic evolution, disruption and resilience in early COVID-19 research," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 126(5), pages 4225-4253, May.
    16. Jaeger, David A & Ruist, Joakim & Stuhler, Jan, 2018. "Shift-Share Instruments and the Impact of Immigration," CEPR Discussion Papers 12701, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    17. Christian Dustmann & Uta Schönberg & Jan Stuhler, 2016. "The Impact of Immigration: Why Do Studies Reach Such Different Results?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 30(4), pages 31-56, Fall.
    18. Ajay Agrawal & John McHale & Alex Oettl, 2018. "Does Scientist Immigration Harm US Science? An Examination of Spillovers," NBER Working Papers 24519, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    19. Ina Ganguli, 2018. "Immigrant selection before and after communism," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 26(4), pages 649-694, October.
    20. Slivko, Olga, 2018. ""Brain gain" on Wikipedia: Immigrants return knowledge home," ZEW Discussion Papers 18-008, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.
    21. Ferrucci, Edoardo, 2020. "Migration, innovation and technological diversion: German patenting after the collapse of the Soviet Union," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 49(9).
    22. Fackler, Thomas A. & Giesing, Yvonne & Laurentsyeva, Nadzeya, 2020. "Knowledge remittances: Does emigration foster innovation?," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 49(9).
    23. Cristelli, Gabriele & Lissoni, Francesco, 2020. "Free movement of inventors: open-border policy and innovation in Switzerland," MPRA Paper 104120, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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