A new study from professors at New York University (NYU) and the University of Pennsylvania found that the use of H-1B workers by U.S. companies has decreased wages for computer programmers, system analysts, and software engineers by as much as 6 percent. The researchers studied tens of thousands of resumes provided by a leading online job search site. The job site data was combined with publicly available data sources, including H-1B hiring figures collected by the U.S. government, and studies showing the average wages for specific information technology (IT) jobs. The report's authors say their research dispels the myth that globalization generates no losers.
The authors say their study is unique due to its exploration of resumes, which, when combined with other public data sources, gave them a sample number of IT workers in each firm that could be coupled with the number of H-1B workers those firms reported hiring.
"Although our findings suggest that the negative effects of globalization may be substantial for some workers, it is critical that policy-makers weigh these effects carefully against the macro-level economic effects," said NYU professor Prasanna Tambe and Pennsylvania professor Lorin Hitt in the report. "Offshoring will most likely remain a necessary and important part of the global economy, and there is substantial evidence that H-1B admissions appear to directly improve levels of innovation and entrepreneurship, which in the long term should create new jobs and raise demand for technology workers in other areas."
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