Sign In

Communications of the ACM

Letters to the editor

Salary Disputes

Letters to the Editor, illustration

Credit: Getty Images

In Moshe Vardi's September 2020 column, "Where Have All the Domestic Graduate Students Gone?," the short but woefully incomplete answer is that the wage premium for a Ph.D. in CS is simply too small to justify foregoing five years of industry-level salary. But why is that the case?

Part of the answer may be due to government policy discussed back in 1989, when an NSF document addressed the "problem" of Ph.D. salaries being too high, and suggested as a remedy increasing the pool of international students ( This would swell the labor market, holding down wage growth. The foreign students would receive nonmonetary compensation in the form of a green card:


No entries found

Log in to Read the Full Article

Sign In

Sign in using your ACM Web Account username and password to access premium content if you are an ACM member, Communications subscriber or Digital Library subscriber.

Need Access?

Please select one of the options below for access to premium content and features.

Create a Web Account

If you are already an ACM member, Communications subscriber, or Digital Library subscriber, please set up a web account to access premium content on this site.

Join the ACM

Become a member to take full advantage of ACM's outstanding computing information resources, networking opportunities, and other benefits.

Subscribe to Communications of the ACM Magazine

Get full access to 50+ years of CACM content and receive the print version of the magazine monthly.

Purchase the Article

Non-members can purchase this article or a copy of the magazine in which it appears.
Sign In for Full Access
» Forgot Password? » Create an ACM Web Account