We’re All International Now

March 28, 2011

I have one add to Eric’s excellent post on the Greater Seattle Chamber’s Intercity Study Mission to the Silicon Valley.  The trip is the the Chamber’s domestic study mission, as compared to the international trip that the Trade Development Alliance organizes for the Chamber…which this year travels to the UK.

But the Chamber’s Intercity trip to Silicon Valley was anything but domestic in nature. In our technology neighbor to the south we found an engineering work force that was 50 percent foreign born led by CEOs a majority of whom were also born overseas. We saw electric car company business models that are targeted at international markets, a social media platform that connects hundreds of millions of people across the world and schools that are preparing students for a life lived in an ever connected globe.

The Silicon Valley would not be the Silicon Valley without large international customers, without foreign talent and without important partnerships abroad.  The same, of course, is true for Greater Seattle’s technology sectors. In today’s globalized world, even a domestic study mission is an international study mission

Weekly B-MOW: Seattle Chamber Intercity Study Mission

March 26, 2011

Every year, the Seattle Chamber does an “intercity study mission,” bringing regional business, government and community leaders to a peer city for a three day exploration of similarities, differences and, most importantly, the best practices that we can take back and copy in our own region. This past week, a group of us traveled for this year’s trip to San Jose for an Intercity Study Mission to Silicon Valley.

The reason to do a study mission to Silicon Valley is obvious: as much as we fancy ourselves as a leading region for innovation, we pale in comparison to the sheer breadth and depth and magnitude of what has come out of that region – HP, Google, Adobe, Apple, Yahoo…the list goes on and on. So, what are those things that we can take from them?

Here are my top three takeaways:

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