The causes of the recession and how the economy pulls itself out of recession are the important factors because this is where future jobs may lie. The move away from manufacturing to services and the outsourcing services to developing countries has changed the economic landscape in developed countries, will there be a change in the financial services landscape? If you consider that a lot of the IBs went to the middle east to secure funding, and countries with trade surpluses are still cash heavy and very liquid it makes sense for an financial services explosion in India and China as their policies, infrastructure and trade agreements mature. Currently its all set up in Singapore and Hong Kong. If the major trading hubs were to gradually move to the East, i believe financial services will also move over. As it is, the USA still has enormous financial clout, but in the long term??!!
Also, there seems to be a trend of developing super companies battling out to dominate markets, reducing the number of competitors through M&A. Will this reduce the number of opportunities in developed companies as they look to maximise profit by moving R&D, manufacturing and the whole supply chain process to developing countries? Afterall these sort of moves allows them to keep prices at a premium and keep profits up particularly in times of recession. Even companies like Tata are becoming global forces in the car industry, Mittel in the steel industry, China Mobile, the worlds biggest Cell phone operator, as these developing giants grow, they will help their countries evolve. As these countries develop they will become less reliant on Western money (as is currently the case)
The West will have to rely on innovation to keep driving forward, new products, new features, new technologies new services. This is where i believe the basis of the continuing strength of the West lies whilst the developing countries are still in service mode, but i wouldn't expect this to last, innovation is a part of Western business culture and when this business culture is spread through the multinationals, it will improve innovation in developing countries as they adopt this attitude.
Will more people go to schools in Europe and Asia... Yes, Europe already have some very well established schools.... Asia? I think this is a different. There will be a few established (establishing schools), but already some of the top US (and European) schools are branching out into this area, either by partnering or setting up campuses (e.g INSEAD in singapore, Wharton helping to set up SMU in Singapore, Partnerships such as the Kellogg-HKUST MBA, Columbia/LBS & HKU partnership etc.) Singapore, in particular, is trying to set itself up as country to go to for academic development so expect fierce competition in that region in the future.
So to answer the question, i don't think our generation of MBA attenders need worry, but the next generation will have a completley different economic landscape. We are at the start of a major economic shift. Look at how quickly Japan did it after WWII!!!
just my 2pence.
Well said togafoot. I am in complete agreement with you regarding the overall trend.