Many high-level technology executives are convinced that some other country, probably China, will supplant Silicon Valley as the global center for innovation within the next four years, according to a KPMG survey of 668 executives.
The finding that 44 percent of respondents expected this shift was surprising to KPMG's Gary Matuszak, but he notes that 42 percent of survey participants were from the Asia-Pacific region. Among U.S. respondents, 28 percent also think Silicon Valley will lose its status as the world's innovation hub, while 39 percent do not.
Matuszak says the survey's chief observation is not a diminishing in Silicon Valley's leadership, but rather greater emphasis on innovation in other parts of the world. He stresses that Silicon Valley stands apart by virtue of an entire ecosystem built up to support innovation, which another region would find very difficult to duplicate.
Information Technology Innovation Foundation president Robert Atkinson says that even if Chinese-owned companies do not become innovation leaders, the Chinese economy "may become an innovation leader if its policies result in foreign multinationals moving even more innovation-based activities to China." He says China wants "to make virtually everything, especially advanced technology products and services."
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