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GMF Immigration Roundtables: A View From Berlin

January 2012
Summary: Immigrants supply labor and skills that are in relatively short supply in the domestic labor market and account for almost half of U.S. labor force growth since the mid1990s. Surprisingly, only a small fraction of immigrant workers enter on employment-based visas. Because of U.S. law, family-based migrants receive the great majority of permanent resident visas. Among employment-based immigrants, high-skilled workers particularly benefit the economy. Their immigration alleviates shortages in key science, health, and technology occupations and spurs innovation and R&D investment. High-skilled workers also have a positive fiscal impact, contributing more in tax payments than they use in public services. Economic gains from migration begin with immigrants participation in the labor force, making employment-based immigration policy especially important because it matches foreign workers to domestic labor demand. Immigration policy that prioritizes work, education, and skills and brings in more high-skilled immigrants is an important reform that will enhance gains from migration.

Policy Brief
economics of immigration. U.S. policy allocates only 14 percent of permanent resident visas to employment-based immigrants, who are overwhelmingly high-skilled, reserving 86 percent of so-called green cards for family and humanitarian cases people who frequently have much less education.1 In other words, quotas restrict the most beneficial immigration, allocating permanent resident visas essentially on the basis of family relationships.2 This article proceeds by first discussing the effects of immigration on the size of the economy, gross domestic product (GDP), and rate of economic growth. Immigrants superior geographic mobility is another benefit noted. Labor market and fiscal effects are then discussed, with particular attention to the impacts by educational attainment. In the policy section, the current U.S. situation and its shortcomings are described, followed by a

U.S. Immigration: Economic Effects and Policy Implications*

By Pia M. Orrenius, Ph.D.
Introduction The United States is the worlds top destination for migrants. No other nation takes in more of them. Immigration boosts the U.S. economy, enhances productivity, spurs innovation, benefits consumers by keeping prices low, and enriches U.S. society and culture. To be sure, there are at least two important caveats to consider. First, there are costs of immigration that mitigate some of the benefits. U.S. arrivals are disproportionately lowskilled and unauthorized. Low-wage immigrant households have an adverse fiscal impact, receiving more in public services than they pay in taxes, on average. Second, gains from immigration are not distributed equally among natives. Competing low-skilled workers, for example, may suffer reduced wages from mass low-skilled immigration, and poor households will not benefit as much as rich ones from lower prices for immigrant-produced goods and services. The economic impact for the United States points to greater benefits associated with high-skilled and employment-based migration. To date, however, immigration law has largely ignored the lessons from the

1 Calculations based on averages over the last five years as published in the Department of Homeland Security, Yearbook of Immigration Statistics. 2 This article does not speak directly to the benefits or costs of humanitarian immigration, since the determination regarding the volume of refugees to accept should not be based on economic principles so much as geopolitical considerations.

1744 R Street NW Washington, DC 20009 T 1 202 683 2650 F 1 202 265 1662 E

* The views expressed are those of the author and do not reflect those of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas or the Federal Reserve System. This article is based in part on Pia Orrenius and Madeline Zavodny. 2011. From Brawn to Brains: How Immigration Works for America. Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas 2010 Annual Report.

GMF Immigration Roundtables: A View From Berlin

Policy Brief
set of recommendations arising from the economic analysis and empirical evidence presented. Economic Effects of Immigration Immigration and GDP Immigrants help power and grease the economys engines. First, immigration increases the labor force, enlarging the economy. There are 40 million immigrants in the United States, 25 million of them workers.3 Although they make up only 16.3 percent of U.S. workforce, these immigrants account for a much larger share of its growth. Nearly half of the increase in the U.S. labor force between 1996 and 2010 was the result of immigration legal and illegal. Nativeborn workers role in workforce growth is diminishing due to several factors, including declining labor force participation rates. As the native-born population ages over the next 20 years, the foreign-born contribution to labor force growth is expected to stay high or even increase. It will help offset 80 million baby boomers retiring from the U.S. workforce over the next two decades.4 When immigrants flow into the labor force, it is not just a question of adding more workers. As long as immigrants differ from natives which they do in varying degrees specialization occurs. Native and immigrant workers sort into the jobs and tasks that they do relatively well. For example, one recent study shows that natives have a comparative advantage in communication-intensive work and immigrants have the advantage in manual labor jobs.5 Specialization increases efficiency, which allows more output to be produced with fewer resources. This boosts labor market productivity, raising economic output or GDP. Although the bulk of GDP gains go to the immigrants in the form of labor earnings, the native-born population also benefits from the immigrant influx through lower prices and specialization in production described above. The effect of immigration on the GDP accruing to natives has been termed the immigration surplus.6 Estimates suggest the gain to natives incomes from immigration is about $35$70 billion per year, which is not insignificant although it represents less than 0.5 percent of the $15 trillion U.S. economy. Consumers benefit from lower relative prices for goods and services; investors, business owners, and landowners from higher returns on capital and land. In cases where immigrants and natives are complements, lower prices can have far-reaching effects. For example, research shows the immigration-induced decline in the cost of child care and housekeeping has significantly increased the labor supply of skilled native women.7 Immigration Surplus: Education, Institutions and Spillovers The immigration surplus depends on, among other things, the relative skill levels of migrants, host country institutions, and spillover effects. If the migrant skill composition is unlike that of natives, then immigrants are complementary to most domestic workers, which means immigrants and natives mutually supply what the other lacks. In this case, the immigration surplus is larger than it would be if migrants and natives were close substitutes, which is when one can perform the work of the other.8 If capital is taken into account, the benefits of high-skilled immigration in particular are larger. Capital represents the economys stock of financial and physical assets including technology.

If the migrant skill composition is unlike that of natives, then immigrants are complementary to most domestic workers, which means immigrants and natives mutually supply what the other lacks.

We use the terms immigrant and foreign-born interchangeably in this article to refer to all individuals residing in the United States who were born abroad to nonU.S. parents. Immigrants thus include legal and illegal, temporary, and permanent residents.
3 4 Social Security Administration (2012) Annual Performance Plan for FY 2012 and Revised Final Performance Plan for FY 2011. Accessed at http://www.socialsecurity. gov/performance/2012/APP%202012%20508%20PDF.pdf 5

Borjas (1995) Corts and Tessada (2009) Borjas (1995)

Peri and Sparber (2011)

GMF Immigration Roundtables: A View From Berlin

Policy Brief
Research suggests skilled migrants are complementary to capital, implying the immigration surplus is larger when high-skilled rather than low-skilled immigration occurs in a capital-intensive economy, such as the United States. There is an added benefit if high-skilled immigrants are more likely to bring physical capital with them when they migrate, such as their own savings, which can then be used for investment.
Figure 1 Immigrant Workers Overrepresented at Extremes of the Education Distribution

Percent 50 45 40 35 30 25 20 15

A look at where immigrants are in the 10 educational distribution of U.S. workers 5 reveals that immigrant flows have been largely complementary to that of natives, 0 Less than high High school Bachelor's degree Master's degree Professional Doctoral degree occurring at the high and low ends of school graduate graduate, some degree the education distribution, where there college are relatively few U.S.-born workers. Note: Percent of foreign workers age 25 and over in the U.S. labor force by education. Source: 2009 American Community Survey That said, newcomers are most overrepresented at the lowest education level If immigration has external or spillover effects on the host among workers who lack a high school degree (Figure 1). economy, the immigration surplus may be smaller or larger Nearly half of workers with less than a high school diploma than the estimates noted above. Congestion and pollution are foreign-born.9 Conversely, 27 percent of workers with costs associated with population growth can reduce benefits doctoral degrees are foreign-born. Overall, foreign-born while the new arrivals innovation and business creation workers account for about 17 percent of all U.S. workers age can increase gains. 25 and older (see dashed line in Figure 1). Host country institutions also play an important role. Wage and price controls and other rigidities are barriers to labor market entry and reduce the immigration surplus by preventing prices, wages, and employment from adjusting to the arrival of new potential workers. Native gains can even become losses if immigration produces increased unemployment, which can occur if migrants are low skilled and domestic wages do not adjust downward. An interesting study of Balkan migration to Western Europe in the 1990s found that job losses in the wake of Balkan inflows were significantly worse in EU countries with more regulated markets.10 Another study showed that immigrants have substantially higher unemployment rates and lower participation rates than do natives in nations with more restrictive labor markets.11
9 28.4 percent of foreign-born workers lack a high school degree compared with 6.5 percent of native-born workers. 10

Foreign born share of labor force

Migrant Mobility Additionally, immigrants relatively greater mobility than natives the willingness to relocate to where economic opportunity exists contributes to the U.S. economy.12 Some opportunity can result from natural disasters, for example. The Hispanic population in Louisiana jumped nearly 20 percent following Hurricane Katrina in 2005, as migrant workers converged upon the state to assist in cleanup and reconstruction. Most regional disparities, however, emerge more slowly as certain industries decline and workers are reluctant to relocate, driving wages down and unemployment rates up in already distressed areas. Those who move to growing areas help reverse this process and speed wage convergence. They also alleviate shortages and bottlenecks that can thwart economic growth in expanding areas. The economy runs more efficiently as a

Angrist and Kugler (2003) Orrenius and Solomon (2006)



Borjas (2001)

GMF Immigration Roundtables: A View From Berlin

Policy Brief
result, and gains accruing to natives from this convergence are around $7.5-$15 billion per year.13 Immigration and Economic Growth The static effects of immigration on the macroeconomy from specialization and greater efficiency are one-time gains that boost output but do not change the long-run growth rate. In the longer term, increases in income per capita come from productivity growth, a result of technological progress. Technology gains, in turn, depend on innovation, which is closely related to research and development activities.
Figure 2 STEM, Health Care Occupations Rely on Highly Skilled Foreign Workers
Medical scientists Computer software developers Mathematicians Chemists Physicians Computer systems analysts and computer scientists Mechanical engineers High school and college instructors Dentists Biological technicians Pharmacists Chemical engineers Biological scientists Economists, market researchers, survey researchers Accountants and auditors Registered nurses Architects Financial managers Managers and administrators Chief executives and public administrators Sales Related Actors, directors, producers Veterinarians Lawyers/Judges

Foreign-born as a percentage of college graduate labor force 0 10 15.5 20 50

Recent research provides ample empirical evidence that immigrants with advanced skills play an important role in innovation.14 Highly educated immigrants receive patents at more than twice the rate of highly educated natives. The difference has been linked to immigrants overrepresentation in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) fields and the growing number of immigrants entering on employment-based and student visas. There is also evidence of positive spillovers on natives, meaning that immigrants not only raise innovation directly but also boost overall patent activity, perhaps by attracting additional resources and boosting specialization. Innovation is also closely related to entrepreneurship, particularly in the high-tech sector. Immigrants founded 25 percent of U.S. high-tech startups between 1995 and 2005.15 In the overall economy, immigrants also have much higher rates of business creation than natives. Immigrants are nearly 30 percent more likely to start a business than natives.16 This is surprising given that immigrants have less wealth, fewer English skills, and often lack institutional knowledge and access to bank credit. However, despite greater proclivity to become entrepreneurs, immigrant self-employment rates are not too different from those

30 40 Percent Note: Percent of workers age 25 and over, with bachelor's degree or higher who are foreign born for selected occupations. Source: 2009 American Community Survey

of natives. The self-employment rates for immigrants were 11.3 percent in 2010, compared with 9.1 percent for natives.17 Figure 2 shows the extent to which immigrants are overrepresented in STEM and health care occupations. In the overall college-educated labor force, immigrants make up 15.5 percent of workers. However, they are 45 percent of medical scientists and 37 percent of computer programmers. Immigrants also have a large presence in medicine, engineering, higher education, accounting and auditing, nursing, and architecture. Fiscal and Labor Market Effects of Immigration Apart from immigrations direct impacts on the economy and growth, it yields indirect effects. There is a fiscal impact the difference between what families pay in taxes and consume in government-provided benefits. High-skilled immigrants, generally well-educated with substantial incomes, pay much more in taxes than they consume in publicly provided services.18 By comparison, low-skilled immigrants are a net fiscal drain because of their low wages, relatively large families, and lack of employer-provided health insurance coverage. In 2010, about 31 percent of

Based on Borjas (2001)

Hunt and Gauthier-Loiselle (2010); Kerr and Lincoln (2011); Hunt (2011); Chellaraj, Maskus, and Mattoo (2008)
14 15

Wadhwa et al (2007) Fairlie (2008)

Orrenius and Zavodny (2011) Smith and Edmonston (1997)



GMF Immigration Roundtables: A View From Berlin

Policy Brief
immigrant-headed U.S. households participated in a major means-tested public assistance program, compared with 19 percent of native-headed households.19 It is important to note that higher welfare participation among immigrants in the United States is not related to lesser economic activity among less educated, foreign-born household heads. They actually have higher participation rates than less educated natives. Rather, the difference is due to greater immigrant participation in public health insurance programs, such as Medicaid and CHIP (the Childrens Health Insurance Program). There are also labor market impacts of immigration that, while not a direct cost of immigration, represent a distributional consequence with political ramifications. Immigration pushes out the labor supply curve, with wages falling in response. Counteracting the downward pressure on wages is heightened labor demand through increased capital inflows, the growth of industries that utilize immigrants and higher demand for goods and services from the immigrants themselves. As a result, most studies have not found large adverse effects of immigration on natives wages. Rather, studies tend to show small but significant negative effects on the wages of low-skilled natives and no adverse impact on high-skilled natives wages.20 Large negative wage effects are experienced by earlier immigrants, however. Policy Implications The global reallocation of workers from low- to highincome countries yields very large benefits. Economic opportunity attracts immigrants who take advantage of it and enjoy a higher standard of living as a result. Meanwhile, immigration can significantly affect host countries economic growth, which benefits natives. In a simple economic model, liberalized immigration policy represents a win-win scenario for immigrants and natives. So why is liberalizing immigration policy so controversial? The problem with devising immigration policy arises from the fact that the gains from migration accrue largely to the migrants, with only a small share falling to host country natives, as previously noted. Moreover, natives gains are either augmented or reduced by immigrations fiscal impact. For this reason, the calculations of immigrations net benefits for natives depend not only on the volume of

In a simple economic model, liberalized immigration policy represents a win-win scenario for immigrants and natives. So why is liberalizing immigration policy so controversial?
immigration, but also on its composition and the nature of host country institutions. Are the immigrants high- or lowskilled? Are they allowed to work, or do laws and regulations limit their access to the labor market? Are immigrants eligible for generous public assistance programs? Immigration policy cannot address all these issues, but influences the volume and composition of immigration. Family Reunification Policy Since the 1965 amendments to the Immigration and Nationality Act, U.S. policy has been based on the principle of family reunification. Immediate relatives of U.S. citizens (spouses, parents, and unmarried children under age 21) are allowed in without numerical limit. Additional relatives, up to 480,000 per year, come in under four capped preference categories. First preference is for the unmarried adult children of U.S. citizens; second, spouses and children of legal permanent residents; third, married children of U.S. citizens; fourth, siblings of U.S. citizens. After five years on a green card, permanent residents can naturalize. Once citizens, they too can sponsor their foreign-born relatives.21 Additional capped green card categories include employment-based visas (140,000) and diversity visas (55,000) for immigrants who come from nations with low U.S. migration rates. There is no explicit cap on refugees or asylumseekers who can receive permanent resident status, though
21 The concern over chain migration likely spurred lawmakers to draft immigrant admission bars as part of the 1996 immigration reform (IIRIRA). The 3- and 10-year bars prevent unauthorized immigrants inside the United States from adjusting status without first spending several years in their home countries. The bars have therefore prevented thousands of immigrants who are eligible for permanent resident status from receiving their green cards.

Orrenius and Zavodny (2011) Peri and Ottaviano (2011); Orrenius and Zavodny (2007)


GMF Immigration Roundtables: A View From Berlin

Policy Brief
Table 1 U.S. Lags Behind Other Nations in Share of Foreign Workers
Country Total Number (Thousands) Work (Percent) Family (Percent) Humanitarian Other (Percent) (Percent)

multinational corporations intracompany transferees (about 75,000), and the O1 program provides visas for a small number of workers of extraordinary ability.

As temporary visa usage grew in the 1990s and 2000s, quotas for employment-based green cards remained Spain unchanged. The mismatch in the Italy number of immigrants on tempoGermany rary visas who wished to stay in the United Kingdom United States and the number of Australia available permanent residence visas produced unprecedented green card France queues. Nearly 1.1 million highCanada skilled workers are waiting for an United States employment-based green card. Many more have likely given up and left Note: Only includes OECD countries; Work includes free movement migrants; Percents may not add to 100 due to rounding. the United States or never bothered Source: 2010 OECD International Migration Outlook applying. For those in the queue, their green cards typically wont be available for years because of the refugee admissions are subject to annual limits set by the strict numerical limits on employment-based permanent U.S. president. visas. There also are country-of-origin limits that restrict Under this system, the United States annually issues about the number of immigrants from populous nations such as 1.1 million green cards, allowing permanent legal residence. China and India, making their queues even longer. About 86 percent go to family members of U.S. citizens or U.S. immigration policy is even more restrictive with regard permanent legal residents, people seeking humanitarian to low-skilled workers, with little opportunity for legal refuge and diversity immigrants. The remaining 14 percent entry. There are two temporary visa programs designed go to people who are immigrating for work reasons but half of these are for workers spouses and children, meaning for low-skilled workers, the H-2A (for farm workers) and H-2B (other seasonal workers) programs. Both are for a mere 7 percent of green cards go to so-called principal employment stints of less than one year. In a typical year workers, most of whom are high-skilled. As can be seen in prior to the recession, these programs together would bring Table 1, no other major developed economy places such a in 110,000 workers. Meanwhile, about four times as many low priority on permanent employment-based immigraworkers would enter illegally.22 tion.


195 139 392 425 228 347 206 168 247 1107

81 80 79 65 59 58 42 34 25 7

17 14 20 31 22 31 51 52 62 73

0 5 0 3 16 1 6 7 13 15

2 2 1 1 2 10 1 8 0 5

The United States has created several temporary visa programs in the past two decades to help compensate for the low number of employment-based green cards. Under the well-known H-1B program, about 130,000 workers enter the country in a typical year, many of them highskilled Indians going to work in the information technology sector. Another important temporary job-based measure is the Trade NAFTA (TN) visa, which brings in an additional 70,000plus professionals, mostly from Canada but a growing number from Mexico. The L1 program allows

The United States has more unauthorized immigrants than any nation in the world, although illegal inflows tapered off significantly during the recent recession and housing bust. Still, an estimated 11 million unauthorized immigrants reside permanently in the United States, of whom about 8 million are workers, representing about 5 percent of the overall labor force.23 Many of the least-skilled workers

Cohn and Passel (2010) Passel and Cohn (2011)


GMF Immigration Roundtables: A View From Berlin

Policy Brief
depicted in Figure 1 entered the United States illegally at one time. For decades, U.S. policy vis--vis unauthorized immigrants consisted of tightening border control. There was little to no interior enforcement. Illegal immigration flourished under this system since, once inside, unauthorized immigrants lived fairly normal lives. This changed following the 9/11 terror attacks. Conditions for unauthorized immigrants deteriorated significantly as state and federal enforcement intensified. Worksite enforcement has forced some into self-employment or the shadow economy, where wages are lower and fringe benefits are scarce. Without comprehensive immigration reform, these tough policies are often counterproductive in that they exacerbate the negative fiscal impact of the low-wage immigrant population by reducing the taxes they pay and increasing their need for public assistance. Although unauthorized immigrants are not eligible for any welfare programs outside emergency medical care, their U.S.-born children are citizens and entitled to the full range of public assistance. Conclusion Economic benefits accrue from both highly and low-skilled immigration. Both tend to complement the native workforce and bring needed skills and manual labor. The gains from migration begin with immigrants participation in the labor force; employment-based immigration policy is important because it matches foreign workers to domestic demand. Policies that keep immigrants out of the workforce, whether through outright bans, regulatory barriers, or wage-setting, reduce the gains from migration. Employment-based immigration also leads to procyclical and flexible labor inflows. Because labor demand is naturally cyclical, work-based immigration declines in economic downturns and rises in expansions. Among employment-based immigrants, high-skilled workers, in particular, benefit the economy. In the United States, high-skilled immigration alleviates shortages and bottlenecks in key science, health, and technology occupations and spurs innovation and investment in research and development. High-skilled workers also have a positive fiscal impact, contributing more in tax payments than they use in public services. Accordingly, immigration policy that prioritizes education and skills and brings in more highskilled immigrants enhances immigrations benefits from the host-countrys perspective. There may be additional benefits to high-skilled immigration, although they are not yet well-documented. Much of it involves industries that produce tradable goods or services, meaning companies can employ their workers in the United States or abroad. Immigration policy that promotes highskilled immigration might slow outsourcing or off-shoring of production. Such policies may also attract foreign and domestic investment, further spurring economic growth. The United States has a lot to gain from rewriting its immigration policy to focus more on high-skilled and employment-based immigration. These payoffs will take years to achieve but require making changes now. Policymakers might do well to also include a larger role for low-skilled employment-based immigration, which would prove instrumental in reducing unauthorized immigration along the Southwest border. References

Angrist, Joshua D., and Adriana D. Kugler. 2003. Protective or Counter-Productive? Labour Market Institutions and the Effect of Immigration on EU Natives. Economic Journal 113:F302-F331. Borjas, George J. 1995. The Economic Benefits from Immigration Journal of Economic Perspectives 9:2:3-22. Borjas, George J. 2001. Does Immigration Grease the Wheels of the Labor Market? Brookings Papers on Economic Activity 2001:69-119. Chellaraj, Gnanaraj, Keith E. Maskus, and Aaditya Mattoo. 2008. The Contribution of International Graduate Students to U.S. Innovation, Review of International Economics 16:3:44462. Cohn, DVera and Jeffrey Passel. 2010. U.S. Unauthorized Immigration Flows Are Down Sharply Since Mid-Decade. Washington, DC: Pew Hispanic Center. pdf Corts, Patricia and Jos Tessada. 2009. Low-skilled Immigration and the Labor Supply of Highly Educated Women. Manuscript, University of Chicago Graduate School of Business. Fairlie, Robert W. 2008. Estimating the Contribution of Immigrant Business Owners to the U.S. Economy, Small Business Administration, Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office. Hunt, Jennifer. 2011. Which Immigrants Are Most Innovative and Entrepreneurial? Distinctions by Entry Visa, Journal of Labor Economics 29:3:417-457.

GMF Immigration Roundtables: A View From Berlin

Policy Brief
Hunt, Jennifer, and Marjolaine Gauthier-Loiselle. 2010. How Much Does Immigration Boost Innovation? American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics 2: 2: 3156. Kerr, William R. and William F. Lincoln. 2010. The Supply Side of Innovation: H-1B Visa Reforms and U.S. Ethnic Invention, Journal of Labor Economics28:3: 473-508. Orrenius, Pia and Genevieve Solomon. 2006. How Labor Market Policies Shape Immigrants Opportunities. Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas Economic Letter 1:7. Orrenius, Pia, and Madeline Zavodny. 2011. From Brawn to Brains: How Immigration Works for America, in Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas 2010 Annual Report, Dallas. Orrenius, Pia and Madeline Zavodny. 2007. Does Immigration Affect Wages? A Look at Occupation-Level Evidence. Labour Economics. Ottaviano, Gianmarco I.P. and Giovanni Peri. 2011. Rethinking the Effect of Immigration on Wages. Journal of the European Economic Association (forthcoming). Passel, J. S., and Cohn, D. 2011. Unauthorized Immigrant Population: National and State Trends, 2010. Washington, DC: Pew Hispanic Center. Peri, Giovanni, and Chad Sparber. 2009. Task Specialization, Immigration, and Wages. American Economic Journal: Applied Economics 1:135-169. Smith, James P. and Barry Edmonston 1997. The New Americans: Economic, Demographic and Fiscal Effects of Immigration. Washington, D.C.: National Academies Press. Social Security Administration (2012) Annual Performance Plan for FY 2012 and Revised Final Performance Plan for FY 2011. Available at http://www.socialsecurity. gov/performance/2012/APP%202012%20508%20PDF.pdf Wadhwa, Vivek, Gary Gereffi, Ben Rissing, and AnnaLee Saxenian. 2007. Americas New Immigrant Entrepreneurs. Unpublished report, Duke University.

About the Author

Pia Orrenius is a research officer and senior economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas and Adjunct Professor at the Hankamer School of Business, Baylor University. Her research focuses on the labor market impacts of immigration, unauthorized immigration, and U.S. immigration policy, and her work has been published in several journals.

About GMF
The German Marshall Fund of the United States (GMF) is a nonpartisan American public policy and grantmaking institution dedicated to promoting better understanding and cooperation between North America and Europe on transatlantic and global issues. GMF does this by supporting individuals and institutions working in the transatlantic sphere, by convening leaders and members of the policy and business communities, by contributing research and analysis on transatlantic topics, and by providing exchange opportunities to foster renewed commitment to the transatlantic relationship. In addition, GMF supports a number of initiatives to strengthen democracies. Founded in 1972 through a gift from Germany as a permanent memorial to Marshall Plan assistance, GMF maintains a strong presence on both sides of the Atlantic. In addition to its headquarters in Washington, DC, GMF has seven offices in Europe: Berlin, Paris, Brussels, Belgrade, Ankara, Bucharest, and Warsaw. GMF also has smaller representations in Bratislava, Turin, and Stockholm.