Saturday, October 24, 2009

Indian and Chinese Phd Student Brain Drain?

Insane in the Brain Drain?

Here's an article by the Washington Post (the mainstream media does trip up and do some research from time to time, heck a broken clock's right twice a day) on Indian and Chinese Phds finding a better life to be back in in their native countries.

Being born in India, and after visiting there a couple of times the past few years, I must say the social fabric of the society is intact there, although it's somewhat changing for the worse due to all the outsourcing. People focus on human values such as friendship and family rather than material wealth. Although things are quickly changing, the majority still live a simpler, respectful, and satisfying life. Even earning 1/3 the U.S. salary there will give you a luxurious, worry free, lifestyle. Let's just say the people staying here are more inclined to be materialistic. Another thing to ponder is why are there so many H1s coming over with experience. It's because they've been given a chance to expand their hands on jobs skills by their companies. Over here you get the runaround. No experience, no job and no chance to get experience.

"What propelled them to return home? Some 84% of the Chinese and 69% of the Indians cited professional opportunities. And while they make less money in absolute terms at home, most said their salaries brought a "better quality of life" than what they had in the U.S. (There was also some reverse culture shock?complaints about congestion in India, say, and pollution in China.) When it came to social factors, 67% of the Chinese and 80% of the Indians cited better "family values" at home. Ability to care for aging parents was also cited, and this may be a hidden visa factor: it's much harder to bring parents and other family members over to the U.S. than in the past. For the vast majority of returnees, a longing for family and friends was also a crucial element.

A return ticket home also put their career on steroids. About 10% of the Indians polled had held senior management jobs in the U.S. That number rose to 44% after they returned home. Among the Chinese, the number rose from 9% in the U.S. to 36% in China.

e surveyed 1,224 foreign students from dozens of nations who are currently studying at U.S. universities or who graduated in 2008. The majority told us that they didn?t think that the U.S. was the best place for their professional careers and they planned to return home. Only 6 percent of Indian, 10 percent of Chinese, and 15 percent of European students planned to settle in the U.S.

Many students wanted to stay for a few years after graduation if given a choice?58% of Indians, 54% of Chinese, and 40% of Europeans. But they see the future being brighter back home. Only 7% of Chinese students, 9% of European students, and 25% of Indian students believe that the best days of the U.S. economy lie ahead. Conversely, 74% of Chinese students and 86% of Indian students believe that the best days for their home country?s economy lie ahead. National Science Foundation studies have shown that the ?5 year stay rates? for Chinese and Indians science and engineering PhD?s have historically been around 92 % and 85% respectively (NSF tracks these 5 years at a time, and the vast majority stay permanently). So something has clearly changed."

[Article]Washington Post: Reverse Brain Drain To India And China

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