Friday, February 4, 2011

Innovation & Entrepreneurism in the West

I serve as the President of TIE Carolinas, see details on TIE here. Innovation and entrepreneurism, whether in-market, through corporations, within non-profits or government driven remains important to our membership.

Good entrepreneurs are known for one quality above all... they act on their belief. John Gapper's blog in the Financial Times "Educate or Import the New Entrepreneurs" here is a good read to highlight the current pitfalls that are only deepening for the aspirational mind who wants to create in the West.

Here is an interesting insight from the article:

"“The great American investment in the wellsprings of science and technology was justified to the public by the cold war,” says Bill Janeway, a managing director of Warburg Pincus, the private equity firm. Mr Janeway would like the US to try again on the basis that the private sector, left to itself, will not invest in such fundamental technologies."

Mr. Gordon Moore (Intel Co-Founder) was awarded the lifetime achievement award by The Marconi Society in 2006. He voiced his concern then that corporate R&D is moving away from the kind of fundamental research that wins Nobel Prizes and toward a narrow focus on business goals. "That's great for the company," he said, "but somebody has to fill the gap."

The article puts forth the key to success in the 21st century:

"The biggest innovation challenge for the US in relation to Asia is not financial but human. China enrols 15 per cent of the world’s university students and 40 per cent of new degrees there are in science and engineering, compared with only 15 per cent in the US. Meanwhile, 68 per cent of US engineering doctorates are now awarded to non-US citizens."

The reality is, it will not be like it was in the 20th century for us in the West. We have to invent a new now to turn it into a successful innovation for the future.

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