Visualizing the Data Behind America's H-1B Visa Program
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The Data Behind America’s H-1B Visa Program

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The H-1B Visa in Charts

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The Briefing

  • The H-1B visa is extremely tech focused, with total software developers making up 38% of all applications
  • More than 275,000 applications were filed in fiscal 2021, but only 85,000 will be accepted

H-1B Visa Origins

The H-1B Visa is an immigration program that brings highly skilled workers into America when a shortage of those skills exists in the domestic labor market. The program came to life as part of the Immigration Act of 1990, under the George H.W. Bush administration. Although the program was temporarily suspended for 10 months under the Trump administration, this stoppage has since been lifted by Biden.

Though regulations permit specialized knowledge workers from various fields, it is primarily tech jobs that crowd these occupations. For instance, software developers and computer systems engineers/architects collectively cover almost 50% of all roles.

Competition Intensifies

The H-1B visa is highly competitive. In fiscal 2021, program applications hit 275,000, a 15-year high. The program follows a lottery system where 85,000 applicants are selected at random. Today, that means a given applicant has about a 30% chance of getting in.

YearNumber of Applicants
2021275,000
2020200,000
2019187,500
2018200,000
2017237,500
2016225,000
2015175,000
2014125,000

Although the system is a lottery, the first 20,000 spots are reserved for those with a master’s degree or higher, so those holding a higher education tend to have improved odds.

Roughly two-thirds of applicants come from India. The large Indian presence exists in the sponsor companies list as well.

Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) is an IT services and consulting company, headquartered in Mumbai, India. In addition to being a top visa sponsor, they’re also among the top two US recruiters of IT services talent, an industry India thrives in. The company trades on the National Stock Exchange of India (NSE) and hold a market cap of $160 billion (₹12 trillion).

America’s Immigration Question

Unlike some other immigration programs, the H-1B visa is not permanent, with a duration of stay between three to six years, contingent on maintaining employment. Should a termination occur, the person must leave the U.S. within the 60-day grace period.

America’s view on immigration can fluctuate over time, affecting application numbers in some cases, like for university and MBA programs. A 2020 poll showed that “the social and political climate in the U.S.” and “feeling welcome in the U.S.” were two growing factors for a decline in international students over the last few years.

But as of now, it looks like this sentiment hasn’t transferred over to H-1B Visa applicants and the program remains more attractive than ever.

Where does this data come from?

Source: Quartz
Notes: Data comes from both 2019 and 2020

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Charted: The Ukraine War Civilian Death Toll

Using data from the UN, this chart shows civilian death toll figures resulting from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

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Ukraine war death toll

The Briefing

  • In total, since the war began in February there have been over 7,031 Ukrainian civilian deaths
  • Most of the civilian casualties recorded were caused by the use of explosive weapons, such as missiles and heavy artillery

Charted: The Ukraine War Civilian Death Toll

Russia’s war of aggression in Ukraine has wrought suffering and death on a mass scale, with many Russian attacks targeted at civilians.

We’ve created this visual using data from the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) to better understand how many civilians have died in Ukraine as a result of the war, as well as how many were injured and how many were children.

The Numbers

As of early December, it is reported that 7,031 people in Ukraine have died because of the war — 433 of them children. Another 11,327 have been injured, 827 of which are children. In total, this is over 18,000 people killed or injured.

The figures are difficult to verify due to differing reports coming out of both Russia and Ukraine. The UN OHCHR anticipates that the numbers could be even higher.

The State of the Conflict

The war began on February 24th, 2022 and less than a year in, millions of people have been displaced by the conflict, and thousands of civilians have been injured or killed.

According to the UN, most of the civilian deaths have been caused by wide-ranging explosives such as heavy artillery shelling, missiles, and air strikes, and have been concentrated in Donetsk and Luhansk and in other territory still held by Ukraine.

Additionally, new estimates from Kyiv report approximately 13,000 Ukrainian military or soldier deaths, which has yet to be confirmed by the army.

Where does this data come from?

Source: The United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights monthly reports on civilian deaths in Ukraine.

Note: Data on deaths and injuries can vary wildly depending on the source.

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