Global Connections

Global Connections are interactions between people, businesses and government in New Jersey with those around the worldThis section focuses on trade, foreign born residents, and travel as well as immigration to New Jersey

National Rankings provide data on how New Jersey compares to other states on measures of Global Connections.

State and Local Reports provide featured analysis of current Global Connections data within New Jersey and its impact on life in the State as well as the economy.


National Rankings compared to other states, New Jersey ranks...

5th in New Legal Permanent Residents

June 4,2014.  With 50,790 new legal permanent residents, New Jersey has the 5th highest number in 2012 according to the Department of Homeland Security's yearbook of Immigration Statistics. California has the most with 196,622 and Wyoming has the least with 427. In addition, New Jersey has the 5th highest number of persons naturalized with 42,622. 

4th in Another Language Spoken at Home

August, 2013.  In 2011, 30.4% of people living in New Jersey spoke another language at home.  This ranked fourth, the highest of any state not bordering Mexico. 

• 11th As a Source of Foreign Direct Investment

June 10, 2014.  In 2013, New Jersey firms and individuals invested nearly $3 billion overseas, ranking 11th among all states according to the The FDI Report 2014 from the Financial Times.  This is up from 13th in 2011,  California was first with $22.6 billion. 

• 5th in Value of Imports

February 3, 2014.  The value of New Jersey imports in 2013 was $119.2 billion, accounting for 5.3% of total U.S. imports.  Measured in current (non-inflation adjusted) dollars, this represents a decline of 4.8% from 2011.  California the nation's largest imported at $381 billion.  China remains New Jersey's largest source of goods, providing 14.1% of all the state's imports. Data are from the U.S. Bureau of the Census.  Note that these figures do not include trade in services. 

• 13th in Value of Exports

February 3, 2014.  The value of New Jersey exports was $36.5 billion in 2013.  This is a slight decline from 2011.  Texas is the nation's largest exporteing state, with $279.7 billion in exports in 2013. Canada was the largest customer for New Jersey exports, receiving 18.5% of all the state's exports in 2013. Data are from the U.S. Bureau of the Census.  As with imports, these figures do not include trade in services.   

• 11th in Number of Overseas Visitors

June 11, 2014.  With 929,000 overseas visitors in 2013, New Jersey ranked 11th.  New York topped the list with 9.8 million overseas visitors. Data are from the U.S. Department of Commerce, International Trade Administration.

• Two of the Best Institutions for Fulbright Scholarships 

October, 2013.  According to the Chronicle for Higher Education,  Princeton and Rutgers Universities tied for 4th among doctoral granting institutions for the number of Fulbright international scholarships received in 2013-14, with 26 each.  New York was the only other state with two top-ten universities (Columbia. 8th place and Cornell 10th place). 

• 3rd in Percent Foreign Born

May, 2013.  Averaged over 2008-2012, 20.8% of New Jersey's total population was born outside the state, according to the Census Bureau's American Community Survey. This trailed just California and New York.  Nationally, the foreign born population constitutes just 12.9% of the total population. 

• 6th in Undocumented Immigrants

March 15, 2013.  In 2012, New Jersey had an estimated 430,000 undocumented immigrants living in the state, according to the Department of Homeland Security.  California had more than 2.9 million undocumented residents, 25% of the national total. 


State and Local Reports

Crossroads of the World: New Americans in Middlesex County, New Jersey

In this 2011 report by Anastasia R. Mann, Director of the Program on Immigration and Democracy at Rutgers, the growth of the immigrant population in Middlesex County is identified and analyzed in the context of New Jersey and the nation. 

Today, the share of the immigrant population statewide hovers at 20 percent. Concentrations are heaviest in the northern counties. With the share of immigrants increasing in almost every county, integration is a priority for every significant sector and institution in the region. See Figure below.

Due to its immigrants, New Jersey’s population — and Middlesex County’s within it — is large, growing and extraordinarily diverse. Nested within the US, where 1 in 7 newcomers make their homes, and within NJ, where 1 in 5 residents emigrated from other nations, 1 in 3 Middlesex County residents is an immigrant. At this scale, immigration offers great opportunities and poses critical challenges. How we meet these challenges has dramatic implications for our shared future…

read the full report


Additional Reports

Marc Holzer, Min-Bong You, & Aroon Manoharan, Digital Governance in Municipalities Worldwide: A Longitudinal Assessment of Municipal Websites Throughout the World, 2009.

Ira N. Gang and Anne Morrison Piehl, Destination, New Jersey: How Immigrants Benefit the State Economy, Eagleton Institute, Rutgers University, December 2008.



Data from the NJ DataBank may be used with the following acknowledgement:

Source: NJ DataBank (, a project of the School of Public Affairs and Administration, Rutgers University-Campus at Newark