The Brain Gain: The Impact of Immigration on American Innovation with Rebecca Diamond

The Brain Gain: The Impact of Immigration on American Innovation with Rebecca Diamond

Levi Strauss & Co.

  • Levi Strauss & Co.'s historian, Tracy Panic, showcases the company's vault museum, which houses historical treasures dating back to the 1800s.
  • Designers draw inspiration from the archived pieces to create new designs.
  • Levi Strauss, an immigrant from Bavaria, found opportunity in America and collaborated with another immigrant, Jacob Davis, to create the first riveted pants, known as the 501s.

Immigration and Innovation

  • Economist Rebecca Diamond discusses the role of immigrants in American innovation, highlighting the difficulty in quantifying their contributions.
  • A new data source linking patent data with migration histories allows researchers to identify immigrant inventors.
  • Immigrants play a disproportionate role in patent activity, with a higher share of inventors being immigrants and immigrant inventors having more patents over their lifetimes.
  • Immigrants contribute 36% of the innovative output in the United States.
  • Immigrant inventors have a global knowledge network that helps diffuse knowledge into the US patent system.
  • The productivity of US-born inventors and workers is significantly impacted by the presence of immigrant inventors.
  • Limiting immigration of highly skilled workers could have a significant negative impact on future innovation in the US.

Research and Collaboration

  • The research team initially intended to study the migration location distortions of inventors but discovered the importance of immigrant inventors while exploring the data.
  • Rebecca Diamond transitioned from studying physics to economics due to her interest in quantitative methods and the connection between math and real-world problems.
  • Diamond finds joy in working with new data sets and combining them with theoretical frameworks to gain insights.
  • Research involves a lot of failures, but the excitement of learning something new and making progress keeps researchers motivated.

Podcast Information

  • The video is about a podcast produced by Jesse Baker and Eric Nuum of Magnificent Noise for Stanford Graduate School of Business.
  • The podcast is hosted by Kevin Cool and features professors from Stanford GSB discussing their research and ideas.
  • The podcast is available on the Stanford GSB website, YouTube channel, and social media platforms. Names:
  • Levi Strauss
  • Jacob Davis
  • Tracy Panic
  • Rebecca Diamond
  • Jesse Baker
  • Eric Nuum
  • Kevin Cool

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