Zuckerberg launches political group
Published 11/04/2013 | 20:21
Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg and other Silicon Valley leaders have formally launched a political pressure group aimed at revamping immigration policy, boosting education and encouraging investment in scientific research.
Mr Zuckerberg announced the formation of Fwd.us in an article in The Washington Post.
He said the United States needs a new approach to these issues if it is to get ahead economically. This, he wrote, includes offering immigrants a path to citizenship.
Mr Zuckerberg wrote: "We have a strange immigration policy for a nation of immigrants. And it's a policy unfit for today's world."
The move comes as a bipartisan Senate group is expected to roll out a comprehensive immigration bill in the coming days. Mr Zuckerberg's goal echoed the proposed legislation.
Mr Zuckerberg, whose great-grandparents were immigrants, said he wants "comprehensive immigration reform that begins with effective border security, allows a path to citizenship and lets us attract the most talented and hardest-working people, no matter where they were born". He also called for higher standards and accountability in schools and increased focus on learning about science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
Today's knowledge and ideas-based economy, the 28-year-old Harvard drop-out wrote, is very different from the economy of the 20th century that was based on natural resources, industrial machines and labour.
Fwd.us, he said, was created to "to build the knowledge economy the United States needs to ensure more jobs, innovation and investment".
Also backing the group are tech leaders such as LinkedIn chief executive Reid Hoffman, venture capitalists John Doerr and Jim Breyer, as well as Ruchi Sanghvi of Dropbox, who was Facebook's first female engineer. Joe Green, founder of Causes.com, serves as the group's president and founder.
Major financial contributors include Google chairman Eric Schmidt, Netflix chief executive Reed Hastings, Yahoo chief executive Marissa Mayer, SpaceX and Tesla Motors chief executive Elon Musk, Zynga chief executive Mark Pincus and former Groupon chief executive Andrew Mason.