Creativity: Global Competition for Talent

(The U.S. is in danger of losing its status as the world's greatest talent magnet)

There is greater global competition for talent

Where the United States was once the first destination for foreign students and the last stop for scientists, engineers, musicians, and entrepreneurs wishing to engage in the most robust and creative economy on the planet, it has now become only one place among many where cutting-edge innovation occurs.

Burgeoning global technology hotspots, the outsourcing of ingenuity, rising intolerance, a faltering education system, cities torn by inequality, disconnected poliical leadership, all point to the looming creativity crisis that is causing the decline of American economic might; according to Richard Florida in his The Flight of the Creative Class—The New Global Competition for Talent

The challenge to the U.S. is the new global competition for talent!

The United States is now facing its greatest challenge since the dawn of the Industrial Revolution. This challenge has little to do with business costs and even less with manufacturing prowess. No, the main competitive threats are not China or India. Our country—for generations known around the world as the land of opportunity and innovation—may well be on the verge of losing its creative competitive edge.

The core of this challenge is the new global competition for talent, a phenomenon that promises to radically reshape the world in the coming decades. No longer will economic might amass in countries according to their natural resources, manufacturing excellence, military dominance, or even scientific and technological prowess.

Today the terms of competition revolve around a central axis: a nations's ability to mobilize, attract, and retain human creative talent. Every key dimension of international economic leadership, from manufacturing excellence to scientific and technological advancement, will depend on this ability.

—Excerpts from The flight of the Creative Class by Richard Florida,
HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.; New York, 2005.