A Reverse Brain Drain

This paper from Issues in Science and Technology, which is the journal of the National Academy of Sciences, summarizes our research into immigration and entrepreneurship and argues that the United States – long the beneficiary of talented immigrants – needs to act quickly to keep skilled workers from leaving to pursue expanding opportunities in their home countries.

The danger is that the United States is taking this immigrant contribution for granted at a time when changes in the global economy are providing alternative career opportunities for the most talented people. In the past, the United States was clearly the best place for the most talented scientists and engineers to work, and there was no need to do anything special to attract them. Those days are gone, and the United States must begin paying more attention to what is necessary to attract foreign talent and taking steps to eliminate barriers to immigration.