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Silicon Valley Loses Foreign Talent

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Silicon Valley is losing more foreign-born executives, engineers, and scientists due to better opportunities in their native countries, tough U.S. immigration laws, and the high cost of living in California. Meanwhile, the Silicon Valley Index shows that fewer foreign students are pursuing engineering and science degrees in the region. The annual study found that foreign students received 16.6 percent of all degrees awarded in science and engineering programs from local colleges and universities in 2007, down from 18.4 percent in 2003.

Harvard Law School senior research associate Vivek Wadhwa says the region is experiencing a massive brain drain. "For the first time, immigrants have better opportunities outside the U.S.," he says.

A lack of work visas also can push foreign talent to leave the United States. Legislation pending in the U.S. Congress would give immigrant entrepreneurs with investment funding a two-year visa.

From USA Today
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