By Bruce Corrie

We are inundated with stories about the costs and burdens of immigrants. This is a myopic view as it focuses only on fiscal costs. What’s missing is a larger picture of how immigrants interact in our economy – as entrepreneurs, consumers, workers, human capital, civic capital, fiscal capital, cultural capital and global capital. I call this immigrant capital.

When we look at immigrant capital we can see a different picture of the role of immigrants in our economy.

One just has to visit certain commercial corridors in the Twin Cities to see how immigrant entrepreneurs have vitalized run-down neighborhoods by providing services and jobs, and serving as role models in their communities. Immigrant entrepreneurship is also occurring at the high tech level in areas such as alternative energy, information systems and manufacturing. The number of Asian and Latino firms is growing at a much faster rate than all the other firms in the state.