The Economics of Modern Cultural Nationalism – Indian Style

Forbes is reporting that Silicon Valley may not be as attractive as it once was for highly-qualified job seekers from India.  In fact, many of those talented young workers are choosing to remain in India and forego all that comes with living and working in the United States.

 “Indian immigrant Rosen Sharma opted for the U.S. in 1993 and has done extraordinarily well here. But if he were just coming out of college these days, he says, he would pick India. The business opportunities are better, he says, and quality of life issues are at least as good: Nice housing? Schools? Safe streets? The chance to feel prosperous on a young engineer’s salary? India is holding its own just fine against the U.S., he believes.”

Hmmm.  This has given me pause to consider that once the economic incentive to reside in the United States is removed from consideration, what remains?  Of course India is not experiencing the same level of social tumult that exists in much of Asia or in Africa.  Still, there is tremendous poverty and the unsettled matter of relations with Pakistan.

Consider this:

 The U.S. is home to Sharma now. He’s applied for U.S. citizenship. He’s raising his children here. He wants the U.S. to be an engine of innovation, for U.S. companies to build sought-after products and to generate good returns for workers and shareholders.

But Sharma, who is president of the IIT Delhi Alumni Association, says the next generation of Indian engineers are unlikely to feel the way he does: Last year, only 10 of the 45 IIT graduates who went through the same program Sharma did decided to pursue jobs in the U.S., he says.

What are the implications for the Valley, and the US economy?

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