Silicon Valley Responds to Obama’s Immigration Order

Monday, November 24, 2014NYT morning report

Screen Shot 2014-11-24 at 1.42.22 PMSilicon Valley’s constant stream of new apps and services depends on hundreds of thousands of foreign-born engineers to help create them. So the technology industry has been pushing for changes to the nation’s immigration policy for more than a decade to allow more skilled workers into the country, Vindu Goel reports.

President Obama’s executive order on immigration last week falls well short of what both immigrants and industry leaders were seeking. The most vexing issues they face, like speeding up the process for obtaining permanent residency and getting more visas for high-skilled technology work, would require an act of Congress.

Nonetheless, some immigrants working in technology were heartened by the president’s actions and said they could potentially make life and work in the United States easier.

One of Mr. Obama’s initiatives, for example, would give entrepreneurs starting a company a special founder’s visa, provided that they raise outside funding. That appeals to Laks Srini, a founder of the San Francisco start-up Zenefits. Read more »