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Monday, May 02, 2011

Brain Drain or Brain Circulation? | A NOTE FROM THE FOUNDER

Brain Drain or Brain Circulation?

by Adam J. Kovitz

A recent report by the Kauffman Foundation in association with Duke University, University of California-Berkeley and Harvard University entitled The Grass is Indeed Greener in India and China for Returnee Entrepreneurs, suggests that the United States is suffering from "Brain Drain" as skilled Indian and Chinese expats return home to booming economies within their own countries.

Vivek Wadhwa, one of the authors of the report, estimates that approximately 300,000 entrepreneurs have returned to both India and China over the past two decades.  This is attributed mainly to the following factors:
1.)  The desire to be back home with friends and family
2.)  Access to local markets
3.)  Considerable economic opportunities, and
4.)  A "flawed" U.S. immigration system.

Wadhwa suggests that this brain drain is bad for the United States: "It is a loss for America. Innovation that would otherwise be happening here is going abroad."  Of course, this also suggests economic loss.

But is there cause to panic?  Is this such a bad thing?

There are others who suggest a "Brain Circulation", where knowledge is now going to be shared on a much wider scale.  

Think about it.

Those who have worked here have developed relationships with the cultural melting pot that is the United States.  With the internet and current social media, current technology can ensure that out of sight does not necessarily mean out of mind when expats return to their homes.

Within my own company we use this same technology to interact with others overseas and develop mutually beneficial relationships (more on this very subject to follow in the coming months).

As I have stated in past articles, the tactics and technologies of networking and relationship-building is breaking down boundaries that separate us and allowing us to grow in ways that we might not have before (notice that I did not say "could have").  It is even causing us to take a more serious look at how we may be defining companies as well as countries in the future.

What I am curious to know are your this brain drain or brain circulation?  In what ways does this effect your business/entrepreneurial enterprise?

Feel free to send your comments to me at and I may include them in an upcoming article.

All my best,


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The Emergence of the Relationship Economy features TNNWC Founder, Adam J. Kovitz as a contributing author and contains some of his early work on The Laws of Relationship Capital. The book is available in hardcopy and e-book formats. With a forward written by Doc Searls (of Cluetrain Manifesto fame), it is considered a "must read" for anyone responsible for the strategic direction of their business. If you would like to purchase your own copy, please click the image above.


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