March 3, 2005 5:18 PM PST

Intel exec fears for U.S. competitiveness

SAN FRANCISCO--Echoing concerns voiced by Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates, a top Intel executive warned on Thursday that the United States risks becoming a second-tier technology player because of a declining educational system.

"We have a lousy education system," Intel Senior Vice President Pat Gelsinger said, speaking on a panel of technology leaders at the Intel Developer Forum here. "We have a weak infrastructure that is decaying."

Gelsinger noted that companies like Intel can adjust by hiring workers in other places but said the consequences for the United States could be devastating. He has noted in the past that the decline in the number of doctorates being awarded is particularly troubling.

"As a global company, this is OK," he said. "As a U.S. citizen, I am fearful. I just fear for our long-term competitiveness."

Microsoft Chief Technical Officer Craig Mundie echoed those concerns. "The U.S. is increasingly in a deficit situation in its education," Mundie said.

Mundie's boss, Gates, last week put a finer point on it, declaring that "America's high schools are obsolete."

Asked where one might find the next batch of talented engineers, Mundie pointed to Russia as one place Microsoft does not yet have a research center. He noted that the country's heritage in math and science offers a kind of "formalism" that could become important in solving an emerging class of technical problems.

Gelsinger said he was interested in the Middle East. Intel already has a vast development effort in Israel, but he said other countries are also interesting, noting that the company is planning to bring a version of the Intel Developer Forum to Egypt.

24 comments

Join the conversation!
Add your comment
Too bad teachers unions won't allow it
Standards for teachers should be much, much higher. But the union won't allow it, they see the need to give teachers, quite often, undeserved raises.

There are many impending disasters upcoming for the US and the world(most notably when oil runs out, which it will on some unknown day), but the declining educational system is one that can help overcome other obstacles.

It isn't entirely fair to put all the blame on the unions, the citizenry is also at fault. Every adult, young and old, needs to throw their support behind real education reforms, that include paying high quality teachers a good wage(say at least double what they get now), while insisting the poor teachers get the boot. Fund schools so they have first rate books and equipment and small class sizes. Universities need to tighted up their education programs and raise the standards near to the ceiling.

Failure to do things like this will cause the US to go into a decline it will never get out of.
Posted by Bill Dautrive (1179 comments )
Reply Link Flag
who's going to pay for it???
where's the money for such an endeavor going to come from? you're not talking millions, you're talking tens of billions, perhaps more.
Posted by mortis9 (370 comments )
Link Flag
If teach such a luxuriant job...
I imagine you must be going for the high pay and easy working conditions and planning to switch careers to being a teacher?

Real problem is that the US is no longer an advanced nation. We are to busy waiting for the money to trickle down as we run up record deficits rather than invest in our shared physical and intellectual infrastructure.

When a country institutes record tax cuts at a time of 'War' and passes the cost off to future generations of Americans at the same time it lowers wages for high-skill jobs by shipping them overseas. Engineering schools are having a hard time attracting students when you tell them they can't party like the pre-MBA majors all for a job where real wages are shrinking Also, if you want to do genetics or environmental research you have to go overseas where governments actually encourage new discovery and look at these challenges as opportunities...

Rather than b'ing and moaning, these CEO types should pay their fair share of corporate and individual taxes and push for progressive government reforms. Amazingly it would help all of us get richer, including them - they just can't think beyond the next quarterly report.

FACT: % of all income taxes paid by corporations:

1973 24%
2003 9-13% (depending on which report you read)
Posted by BlueInWI (226 comments )
Link Flag
Apology...
I was misled by your first paragraph - I now understand that you agree good teachers need better pay as well.

I stick by the rest of my comments though about our nations priorities as a whole being wrong.
Posted by BlueInWI (226 comments )
Link Flag
Too bad teachers unions won't allow it
Standards for teachers should be much, much higher. But the union won't allow it, they see the need to give teachers, quite often, undeserved raises.

There are many impending disasters upcoming for the US and the world(most notably when oil runs out, which it will on some unknown day), but the declining educational system is one that can help overcome other obstacles.

It isn't entirely fair to put all the blame on the unions, the citizenry is also at fault. Every adult, young and old, needs to throw their support behind real education reforms, that include paying high quality teachers a good wage(say at least double what they get now), while insisting the poor teachers get the boot. Fund schools so they have first rate books and equipment and small class sizes. Universities need to tighted up their education programs and raise the standards near to the ceiling.

Failure to do things like this will cause the US to go into a decline it will never get out of.
Posted by Bill Dautrive (1179 comments )
Reply Link Flag
who's going to pay for it???
where's the money for such an endeavor going to come from? you're not talking millions, you're talking tens of billions, perhaps more.
Posted by mortis9 (370 comments )
Link Flag
If teach such a luxuriant job...
I imagine you must be going for the high pay and easy working conditions and planning to switch careers to being a teacher?

Real problem is that the US is no longer an advanced nation. We are to busy waiting for the money to trickle down as we run up record deficits rather than invest in our shared physical and intellectual infrastructure.

When a country institutes record tax cuts at a time of 'War' and passes the cost off to future generations of Americans at the same time it lowers wages for high-skill jobs by shipping them overseas. Engineering schools are having a hard time attracting students when you tell them they can't party like the pre-MBA majors all for a job where real wages are shrinking Also, if you want to do genetics or environmental research you have to go overseas where governments actually encourage new discovery and look at these challenges as opportunities...

Rather than b'ing and moaning, these CEO types should pay their fair share of corporate and individual taxes and push for progressive government reforms. Amazingly it would help all of us get richer, including them - they just can't think beyond the next quarterly report.

FACT: % of all income taxes paid by corporations:

1973 24%
2003 9-13% (depending on which report you read)
Posted by BlueInWI (226 comments )
Link Flag
Apology...
I was misled by your first paragraph - I now understand that you agree good teachers need better pay as well.

I stick by the rest of my comments though about our nations priorities as a whole being wrong.
Posted by BlueInWI (226 comments )
Link Flag
Education?
Our education system is in shambles according to Bill Gates from MICROSOFT. Hmmmmm, this is strange. Microsoft must have hired these highly educated people for their security & software stability division.
Posted by (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
don't be a jerk
microsoft has quite high standards for it's software engineers. you think you can do better? where did you go school? what kind of degree do you have?
Posted by mortis9 (370 comments )
Link Flag
Education?
Our education system is in shambles according to Bill Gates from MICROSOFT. Hmmmmm, this is strange. Microsoft must have hired these highly educated people for their security & software stability division.
Posted by (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
don't be a jerk
microsoft has quite high standards for it's software engineers. you think you can do better? where did you go school? what kind of degree do you have?
Posted by mortis9 (370 comments )
Link Flag
Future Tech Lead
Education in parts of the USA needs to be improved/reformed but there are also areas in the USA that have, for decades, been exporting educated young people to the rest of the country because their area lacks quality jobs.

Exporting Research jobs to foriegn markets under the illusion of saving some money is a greater danger to the country's and the company's Technology and financial future.
Posted by (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Future Tech Lead
Education in parts of the USA needs to be improved/reformed but there are also areas in the USA that have, for decades, been exporting educated young people to the rest of the country because their area lacks quality jobs.

Exporting Research jobs to foriegn markets under the illusion of saving some money is a greater danger to the country's and the company's Technology and financial future.
Posted by (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
It takes a village to raise a child...
The decay of our society is the result of a quarter-century of rule by a party that caters to the belief that the public sector is evil because it demands a slice of their wealth to maintain. Schools, like hospitals, police forces, highways, etc., can only be maintained at a minimal level of quality when Presidents and governors work on dismantling governments by giving away their revenue as tax cuts to the well-off classes. You get what you pay for. Republicanism is about letting the well-off opt out of the life of the community so they can go enjoy their wealth behind locked gates; Evangelicalism is the religious wing of the party that absolves them from guilt about the savagery their greed imposes on the rest of us. When even the biggest capitalists begin to notice the shabbiness our society has sunk to it spells trouble for the right wing...
Posted by Razzl (1318 comments )
Reply Link Flag
It takes a village to raise a child...
The decay of our society is the result of a quarter-century of rule by a party that caters to the belief that the public sector is evil because it demands a slice of their wealth to maintain. Schools, like hospitals, police forces, highways, etc., can only be maintained at a minimal level of quality when Presidents and governors work on dismantling governments by giving away their revenue as tax cuts to the well-off classes. You get what you pay for. Republicanism is about letting the well-off opt out of the life of the community so they can go enjoy their wealth behind locked gates; Evangelicalism is the religious wing of the party that absolves them from guilt about the savagery their greed imposes on the rest of us. When even the biggest capitalists begin to notice the shabbiness our society has sunk to it spells trouble for the right wing...
Posted by Razzl (1318 comments )
Reply Link Flag
There's no money in IT
Americans are smart. When students are choosing a field of study, they avoid the ones that make it difficult to find employment, in favor for those that can pay more money for less effort. That's basic economics.

When the US government imports thousands of H-1Bs a year to flood the IT labor market, they have to expect the market to react. Intel bribed our legislators and caused the problem. Now they have to live with it.
Posted by 201293546946733175101343322673 (722 comments )
Reply Link Flag
There's no money in IT
Americans are smart. When students are choosing a field of study, they avoid the ones that make it difficult to find employment, in favor for those that can pay more money for less effort. That's basic economics.

When the US government imports thousands of H-1Bs a year to flood the IT labor market, they have to expect the market to react. Intel bribed our legislators and caused the problem. Now they have to live with it.
Posted by 201293546946733175101343322673 (722 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Intel exec fears for US competitvness
If Mr. Gates and Mr. Geisinger are truely concerned for our education system why don't they invest their tinme and money and other resources in repairing the system.
It is obvious our government is more concerned in their finger pointing than in improving education in the U.S.
Bottom line, put your money where your mouth is!
Posted by (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Intel exec fears for US competitvness
If Mr. Gates and Mr. Geisinger are truely concerned for our education system why don't they invest their tinme and money and other resources in repairing the system.
It is obvious our government is more concerned in their finger pointing than in improving education in the U.S.
Bottom line, put your money where your mouth is!
Posted by (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
So what are MS and Intel doing about it other than hiring foreign workers?
Couldn't they put some energy and monet into Education and Training? Might be just about as cheap in the long run..
Posted by SWtester (6 comments )
Reply Link Flag
So what are MS and Intel doing about it other than hiring foreign workers?
Couldn't they put some energy and monet into Education and Training? Might be just about as cheap in the long run..
Posted by SWtester (6 comments )
Reply Link Flag
 

Join the conversation

Add your comment

The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Click here to review our Terms of Use.

What's Hot

Discussions

Shared

RSS Feeds

Add headlines from CNET News to your homepage or feedreader.