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June 22, 2008




Please verify my following comments, but I recently read that India and China in fact have LESS engineers than the US due to the way they classify "engineers". Apparently, mechanics, plumbers, and other skilled trades are classified as engineers in India and China. This throws the actual figures way off and lends credence to the fact that the US graduates more engineers than either India or China.

Bob Comments:

There is a great deal of misinformation about the number of engineers each country is graduating because of the different nomenclature used by each country.

What you are referring to is a recent report that the US graduates more engineers per capita than India or China. Of course India and China have 4 times the "capita" of the U.S., so I still am not certain we have a reliable number.

Here are a couple of facts that are accurate:

1- of all U.S. college graduates in 2007, 5% majored in engineering.

2- Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, HP, Lilly, Merck, Pfizer, GE, etc have all opened large R&D centers (in addition to other facilities) in India or China or both in the past decade, presumably because they are able to find quality engineers at reasonable salaries.

I can't recall a major US company opening an R&D center in the US and announcing the desire to hire 5,000 engineers or scientists in the following 12 months. But I'm only 52 years old.

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