- Many skilled immigrants suffer from the nonrecognition of their foreign professional credentials within the US labor market. As such, they are often forced to accept employment in fields that do not make full use of their skills. Consequently, foreign trained professionals are underrepresented in the upper segments of the American labor market (Congressional Budget Office, 2010). This underrepresentation is usually attributed to a naturally occurring adjustment period as immigrants integrate into the US labor market. However, an alternative explanation is that regulatory institutions actively exclude immigrants from the upper segments of the labor market. The institutional design of licensing boards and regulatory regimes surrounding professions have erected barriers to immigrants and give advantages to American-born and educated workers. The nature of these barriers can be attributed to how different groups are understood by regulators and legislators. The social construction of policy design framework can detect how different immigrant populations are viewed and constructed. This study will use structured interviews and document analysis to compare licensing experiences of foreign-trained Iraqi pharmacists and US trained pharmacists in the state of Oregon.