SITE Working Paper Series
Immigration & Ideas: What Did Russian Scientists 'Bring' to the US?
Abstract: This paper examines how high-skilled immigrants contribute
to knowledge diffusion using a rich dataset 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 US, 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.
Keywords: high skill immigration; citations; innovation; Russia; (follow links to similar papers)
JEL-Codes: J40; J61; O33; (follow links to similar papers)
54 pages, November 19, 2014
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