India’s economy grows at 6% a year, but its per capita output is stagnant because of population growth. In the U.S., lower population growth and 3% economic growth mean real per capita growth. And although India graduates large numbers of engineers, most, Kumar contends, aren’t well trained.
“There must be something wrong when a country that graduates 300,000 engineers per year gets no Nobel Prizes, gets few patents, and has only a $1.8 trillion economy,” Kumar says.
He sees no need for the U.S. to churn out engineers to better compete with India. Although the U.S. can always stand to improve its educational system, Kumar says, the country already “has more than enough brilliant scientists, inventors, and chemists.”
What the U.S. shouldn’t do, Kumar says, is send talented foreigners trained in U.S. schools back to their home countries because of visa restrictions. “That is like gold slipping through your fingers,” he says.A refreshing set of ideas, especially from the C-suite.