Highly-skilled foreign workers and the U.S. job market

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Hal Salzman, a senior fellow at Rutgers University's John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development in New Brunswick. (Photo from policy.rutgers.edu/)

So what do you think -- will the expansion of guest-worker visas for highly-skilled professionals depress the job market in the U.S?

That's what Hal Salzman, a Rutgers University professor and a fellow at the John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development, thinks. He's the co-author of a study released Wednesday by the Economic Policy Institute. In covering the story in Thursday's Inquirer, I did quite a bit of reading. Obviously, given space restraints, I wasn't able to completely express the entirety of everyone's views.

So, I'm going to provide some links to the stuff I read. Obviously, this represents an extremely small slice of the mammoth legislative proposal known as the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act. This particular story focuses on highly-skilled workers.  

Here are the links:

Testimony of Brad Smith, Microsoft general counsel: He says there's a genuine talent shortage.

Testimony of Ronil Hira, a Rochester Institute of Technology professor: He says the H-1B visas are all about paying workers less.

The study itself, titled Guestworkers in the High-Skill U.S. Labor Market. The study's co-authors are Daniel Kuehn, and B. Lindsay Lowell.

Here's the text of the bill and here's a link to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee page which lists the names of all the folks who testified earlier this week and provides links to their testimony.

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