In India we have a large number of institutions.The coordination between them is not sufficient.A good team of experts are required in reframing the whole syllabus which will meet today's indusrty requirements. There are suggestions to tune the syllabus by narrowing down the areas and peaking them will result in high qualification in the particular area. This results in narrowing of the job opportunities. But still there are better ways to improve the standards of curriculam. It is possible. Every institution needs to think of the same and implement the improved methods of teaching the basics. The foundations needs to be strengthened.
Big MNCs working in Chip design and EDA are very well aware of the facts mentioned here . As a result , in spite of having large Indian design teams ,they keep Architecture ,Program Management and major decision taking in US.Only if they feel very confident of the Indian Manager ( typically a person who has spent 10+ years in their US design centre) ,then only these things are handled in India . This is a win win situation for everybody as 90% of work involved in any chip design project is execution and only 10% is innovation.Also , software engineers constitute about 70% of headcount in any Chip design project and typically Indians have better acumen there .
I work with and mentor Indian engineers everyday. As engineers, they run full gamut of under-productive to very productive, just like us. On the whole they have different work inclination: (1) Their idea of being done is not as done as US engineers; (2) They are not used to working to hard deadlines; (3) They take a sie la vie attitude toward finishing on time; (3) They don't like extreme pressure, and will throw there hands up in the air when pressured too much. BUT, as they grow more experienced that will change and they will become (innocense lost) more like us (for bad or good).
I m pretty sure you(I mean the innovative west) would have basked in glory of the advancements in other industries 15 years back. Lot of you would have doubted the capabilities of east to manufacture quality goods but its for all to see how China has taken over the world. Well you may have to wait for 10 years to actually see which way semiconductor industry moves. One thing is for sure market for embedded products is in east, for those who are not well read I would advice to get hold of the marketing data. Till then please keep innovating and generating jobs in India , win-win in short term ...
From the corporate point of view: It doesn't matter whether the engineers from India are good or bad, as long as they are paid low enough to reflect a (perceived) savings to the bottom line. As long as profits are demanded by shareholders, outsourcing overseas will continue. That's just the way the capitalist system operates and there's no getting around it.
Should we worry about India? Not really. What we need to worry about first and foremost is the ethics and morals of the companies we work for. Unless we can change their thinking, it's only a matter of time before all of us are outsourced in the name of profit.
To all the folks here. I have run and built teams from the ground up in both India and the US. The difference is:
1) In the US a lot of students become engineers because they like engineering. There are many opportunities other than engineering to make money. In countries like India, becoming a doctor or and engineer is your ticket out of poverty and a life of mediocrity. So a lot of students who do not have the aptitude get into these fields. Hence the lack of innovation. India still has not learned the rule: Quantity != Quality.
As far as IITs go, the brand is being diluted. India lacks good engineering colleges and faculty. Most of the IITs and top schools in India have US educated PhDs as professors or who were professors in US returning and teaching there.
3) Our recruiting average was: out of every 2000 resumes we viewed we ended up hiring about 1 person. So being better educated about where to recruit people from in India also helps.
In case of outsourcing, as long as the cost differentials are there, the trend will continue. Nowadays American companies are also driven by a short term profit motive without much investment in R&D. There is also a dumbing down of the population with less and less graduates in engineering and science being produced, with people doubting basic scientific fact.
One point to ponder there were over 32,827 science and engineering PhDs awarded in the US in 2008 (NSF data). I want to ask, does the level of innovation match this data ? Historically we award close to 20,000 PhDs every year in science and engineering.
Last but not least, Intelligence is not monopolized by anybody, there are smart people everywhere. With time, as the middle class grows in countries like India, they will produce a lot of good engineers and innovation.