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New Statistics and Report Show Importance of Immigration and Inclusion

Inclusion and Diversity Reports Show Importance of Glob

April 18, 2017

The Greater Des Moines Partnership is focused on ensuring that Greater Des Moines (DSM) is a welcoming home to talented workers from across the globe. Last year, The Partnership worked with the Immigration Integration Initiative Task Force and New American Economy (NAE) to develop Global DSM: International Talent Strategy. This strategy offers recommendations on how the region can further attract and retain foreign-born talent to the regional community. It is part of The Partnership’s ongoing efforts to attract and retain talented workforce to continue our community’s momentum.

Diversity and Inclusion Info Shared

Recently, two organizations that The Partnership works closely with, NAE and the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE), released information regarding immigration, diversity and inclusion that helps shed further light on the importance of initiatives such as Global DSM: International Talent Strategy.


New American Economy (NAE) released a new tool that shows comprehensive data regarding immigrant residents in our state and in each congressional district. We encourage you to review to see the full statistics. Here are a few stats that we found interesting:

  • Iowa is currently home to more than 150,000 immigrants.
  • Between 2010 and 2014, our state’s foreign-born population grew by more than 9 percent.
  • Iowa’s 3rd Congressional District, which is the district that includes Polk County, is home to 48,832 immigrants that contribute more than $360 million in taxes paid and about $1.1 billion in spending power.
  • The 3rd District has 1,225 immigrant entrepreneurs and our state has 6,070 immigrant entrepreneurs. Nationally, immigrants are 28 percent more likely to be entrepreneurs than native-born citizens.

Also of note, ACCE recently released a report titled “Embracing the Challenge: The Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Imperative for Chambers of Commerce.” The report explored immigration and inclusion as it relates to the work of chambers of commerce, and in turn, the business communities they serve. Again, we encourage you to read the full report. Here are a few findings that I found interesting:

  • The country is becoming increasingly diverse, and these diverse communities represent a key part of our economic future.
  • The number of businesses owned by immigrants is growing nationally. Cities and regions that embrace diversity do better economically.

Des Moines is a global community. The Partnership is focused on continuing efforts such as Global DSM to ensure our community is a welcoming place for foreign-born talent. We also continue to promote inclusion by hosting multiple Multicultural Receptions throughout the year, in addition to roundtable discussions and career fairs. Watch for information about our next inclusion-related event in coming months. Join the conversation on Twitter by using the hashtags #GlobalDSM and #DSMUSA.

Jay Byers

Jay Byers is the CEO of the Greater Des Moines Partnership. He currently serves on the Executive Committee of the Iowa Chamber Alliance, on the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE) Executive Board, Board of Directors and Community Growth Education Foundation, the General Council of the World Chambers Federation and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Committee of 100.