Barriers to Growth: Examining U.S. Immigration Policy and the Visa System for Skilled Foreign Workers

By Mirza Ramic

Abstract: This paper contends that the US visa system for skilled foreign workers must change in order to meet the new economic demands and changing global challenges of this century. The US immigration policy and visa system are long due for a major overhaul, and at risk is the future of American economic growth and stability. Specifically, this paper recommends two key improvements. First, the H-1B visa annual cap and per-country quota should be eliminated to provide flexibility in relation to evolving economic needs. Second, a new agency overseeing the visa allocation process should be established, forging strong ties with both the private and education sectors. Implementing such measures will help streamline the visa process for skilled foreign workers and ensure continued US leadership in the increasingly competitive global knowledge economy.

About the Author
Mirza Ramic is an MA candidate at The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. His primary areas of focus are International Information & Communication and Strategic Management & International Consultancy. Prior to graduate studies, he co-founded the experimental music group Arms and Sleepers, which released 16albums, performed over 500 concerts in 29 countries, and was featured on national news media such as National Public Radio (NPR). He also cofounded the fundraising campaign "Music Against Hunger" through the United Nations World Food Program USA, which raised a little over $9,000 for humanitarian relief efforts in East Africa.

Photo courtesy of Sue Waters via Flickr.

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This article argues US corporation should be free to replace their US workers with cheaper labor imported on temporary US work visas from overseas.

After all, it's all about CEO bonuses and corporate profits, right?

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