Effects of Federal Immigration Policy on US Science and All Scientists

Recorded -- Fri Sep 17, 2021
2 hours

Addresses how immigration has historically boosted US science, but current trends, especially towards Chinese scholars, risk tarnishing the nation's scientific reputation. It'll explore the human impact and suggest ways for the scientific community to support international scholars.

Sponsored by: American Physical Society, American Institute of Physics, American Association of Physics Teachers, Asian American Scholar Forum, APA Justice, International Organization of Chinese Physicists and Astronomers (OCPA), National Society of Black Physicists, United Chinese Americans

US science has long benefited from political upheaval, discrimination and repression in other countries. Jewish scientists fleeing Nazi Europe propelled the United States to scientific leadership and subsequent immigrants have maintained the nation’s scientific position ever since. Current political attitudes and trends, however, are placing at risk the reputation of the United States as an open and welcoming society that supports science and innovation.

This webinar will summarize the history regarding the effects of immigration on US science, describe how attitudes in the United States towards students and scientists of Chinese ethnic origin are changing, describe the human toll of this change in attitude and policy, and discuss how the scientific community can best support international students and scientists.

After attending, webinar attendees will take away a better understanding of:

  1. The history of immigration and how it has led to US leadership in science
  2. The experiences of immigrants and the cost of the current situation through stories of speakers
  3. Actions by APS and other scientific societies, funding agencies, universities and other institutions, departments and individuals that could support international students and scientists.

Webinar attendees will have the opportunity to discuss how the current situation is affecting them and to provide suggestions for how to support international students and scientists.

The webinar will be recorded, so please register even if you cannot attend live and you will receive a link to the recording.


  • Dr. S. James Gates (Brown University, Ford Foundation Professor of Physics & Affiliate Professor of Mathematics; APS, President)
  • Dr. Jonathan Bagger (APS, CEO)


  • Dr. Andrea Liu (University of Pennsylvania, Hepburn Professor of Physics; Past Speaker of APS Council)


  • Dr. Steven Chu (Stanford University, Professor of Physics and Molecular & Cellular Physiology)
  • Dr. Chrisy Xiyu Du (Harvard University, Research Associate)
  • Dr. Mark Elsesser (APS, Director of Government Affairs)
  • Dr. Jeong Kim (Kiswe Mobile, Inc., Chairman)
  • Dr. Mengkun Liu (Stonybrook University, Associate Professor)

Join your Society

If you embrace scientific discovery, truth and integrity, partnership, inclusion, and lifelong curiosity, this is your professional home.