Korn Ferry: Chinese Fishing Village - Future Global Tech Hub?

In this article, Mike Distefano of Korn Ferry dives into how Shenzhen, China, has become a gleaming new tech city. The modest fishing village of Shenzhen now lays claim to the highest per-capita GDP in China and has appeared as a digitally driven village proclaimed by many as the next Silicon Valley. Here's what the article explains:

  • Shenzhen’s combination of political support, economic muscle, and demographic composition lead to its promising future.
  • Its designation as China’s first “Special Economic Zone” offered preferential policies that attracted hundreds of billions of dollars in foreign investment.
  • In the span of just three decades, Shenzhen’s population more than doubled.
  • While many newcomers were migrants put to work in Shenzhen’s massive manufacturing center—the city makes 90% of the world’s electronics—many newcomers were also among the most ambitious entrepreneurs and highly skilled tech talent in the world.
  • College-educated talent relative to the permanent population stands at 37%, higher than in both Beijing and the New Pudong district of Shanghai.
  • As of October 2017, the city had certified and introduced 9,604 top professional talents from both home and abroad, mainly researchers in technology fields.
  • Just last year, roughly 15,000 overseas Chinese students returned to Shenzhen to work, a 50% increase from 2016.

In this case, the elements, including government support, advanced education and national pride, has created a virtuous cycle of innovation and prosperity here.

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