February 22, 2020
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Two-Way "Brain Circulation"

Two-Way "Brain Circulation"
Two Silicon Valley academics have put out conflicting reports on the involvement of US-based Indian and Chinese entrepreneurs in their home countries. While AnnaLee Saxenian, a professor at the University of California, Berkeley, says immigrant entrepreneurs play an active role building businesses in the countries of their origin, Prof Rafiq Dossani, of the Asia/Pacific Research Center at Stanford University, says this trend is "more negative than positive".

Interestingly, Saxenian and Dossani jointly collected data for their individual research in the summer of 2001. "The Indians and Chinese in the US have very limited interactions with their home countries," says Dossani. "Under the current conditions (the economic slowdown), I would still stand by my report," he adds. Saxenian, on the other hand, argues in her study, Local and Global Networks of Immigrant Professionals in Silicon Valley, that a growing interest in investing back home has turned the "brain drain" into a more complex "brain circulation". This "two-way process," she says, has succeeded in linking Silicon Valley with cities like Bangalore, Mumbai, Taiwan, Beijing and Shanghai. One point Dossani and Saxenian did concur on was problems the immigrants face establishing businesses in their native country. For Indians, unreliable infrastructure, government bureaucracy and regulations overwhelm all other factors as potential deterrents. For the Chinese, the bureaucratic system and regulations ranked first. A.K. Sen in Washington

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