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Topic Title: Electronics Engineering moving to China and India
Topic Summary: Clarification
Created On: 10 September 2011 03:23 AM
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 10 September 2011 03:23 AM
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eswnl

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Joined: 29 November 2008

When people moan about electronics engineering moving to China India etc, is it just the assembly or does it include design as well?

If those countries produce graduates of their own, then I suppose there is no reason why the design can't be done over there as well.
 13 September 2011 07:21 AM
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jencam

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The simple answer is yes. Research and design is being offshored in exactly the same way as manufacturing. In a globalised world intellectual brains are becoming a cheap commodity. I don't think British engineers really understand or appreciate this and the detrimental affect it will have on their careers in the west. The American Engineering Association certainly knows about it. In contrast the IET wholeheartedly believes in globalisation even if it means that almost no engineers exist in the UK because their work will have moved to China where an electronics design engineer is paid a lower salary than an office cleaner back at home. As long as they get their (overinflated) membership fees from somewhere than that's all they care about.
 16 September 2011 01:15 AM
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eswnl

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Originally posted by: jencam

The simple answer is yes. Research and design is being offshored in exactly the same way as manufacturing. In a globalised world intellectual brains are becoming a cheap commodity. I don't think British engineers really understand or appreciate this and the detrimental affect it will have on their careers in the west. The American Engineering Association certainly knows about it. In contrast the IET wholeheartedly believes in globalisation even if it means that almost no engineers exist in the UK because their work will have moved to China where an electronics design engineer is paid a lower salary than an office cleaner back at home. As long as they get their (overinflated) membership fees from somewhere than that's all they care about.


I wonder they don't say this in the engineering magazines i.e the truth.

But then again not all engineering or research is outsourced and I guess its the job of the magazines to promote instead of demote. To keep whatever engineering we have left.
 19 September 2011 07:50 AM
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jencam

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Originally posted by: eswnl
I wonder they don't say this in the engineering magazines i.e the truth.


Which particular magazines? Can you name them?

But then again not all engineering or research is outsourced and I guess its the job of the magazines to promote instead of demote. To keep whatever engineering we have left.


The economist in me says that no engineering is safe from outsourcing and offshoring.
 20 September 2011 03:19 AM
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deleted_1_Nimer

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Honestly, nothing's safe from outsourcing; in the eyes of CEOs, Presidents & chairmen, it's all about money. If they're able to save money by laying off locals to outsource labour in a foreign country (especially one where the average worker's salary is much less than in Western Europe or North America,) they will.

This, at least, is my opinion (& it ignores many ethical aspects).

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Technology: something that's hated & cursed at by all engineers, technologists & technicians!

( Lousy modern technology! )
 20 September 2011 08:30 AM
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jencam

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But the most worrying thing is that there are no signs of a backlash against offshoring from the grassroots. Are engineers asleep or are they happy to let their occupation and livelihood be decimated by the corporate and financial elite?
 21 September 2011 05:48 PM
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eswnl

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Originally posted by: jencam

But the most worrying thing is that there are no signs of a backlash against offshoring from the grassroots. Are engineers asleep or are they happy to let their occupation and livelihood be decimated by the corporate and financial elite?


But civil engineering or electrical utilities engineering, railway engineering might be safe from offshoring? Offshoring these jobs is not really possible.
 22 September 2011 05:45 AM
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jencam

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There will probably be a small handful of areas that are immune to offshoring including anything related to defence and national security. The number of jobs will be so small that 16 year year olds will have better prospects as community magicians than engineers.
 24 September 2011 12:03 AM
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deleted_1_Nimer

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In a sense, it's true for larger corporations. It's not true for smaller (& lesser-known) companies, but the smaller companies tend to get swallowed up by the larger corporations.

This said, many large-scale corporations that are involved in engineering are of Asian descent anyways (Mitsubishi, National/Matsushita/Panasonic, Lenovo, Toshiba, Samsung, Sony, Subaru, Square Enix, Hitachi, Nintendo, Toyota, Honda, Alps, Alpine, Yamaha, etc.). You could say that these Asian companies are offshoring their work to places outside of their native land & reducing the amount of jobs available to locals, too. So you can't really take a protectionist stand towards your local economy if it's being fueled by foreign investment, especially if the foreign investment itself comes in the form of offshoring.

So, if there were no offshoring by foreign companies to your local area, product prices for local brands will skyrocket while everyone still can't find enough local jobs, due to local companies not accepting more applicants. And the same goes for vice versa; to keep the prices of local brands low, the CEOs then hire offshore. In either way, it's still the ogre's decision when it comes to promoting local growth or reducing local deficits.

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Technology: something that's hated & cursed at by all engineers, technologists & technicians!

( Lousy modern technology! )
 24 September 2011 12:11 PM
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jencam

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Globalisation is basically a race to the bottom. As the 21st century unfolds I expect that the argument will not be between capitalist vs communist but between globalist vs localist. This will probably happen after the US has well and truly burnt itself out through the costs of fighting unwinnable foreign wars in the name of Wall Street and Tel Aviv.
 27 September 2011 03:01 PM
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tobibaker

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I think thats a rather sheltered view on Globalisation, for some reason when people discuss globalisation they do it with a negative tone. Without Globalisation people like you and me in america and the UK wouldn't have access to half of the massive array of products that we have access to.

Globalisation is is a fundamental precursor to a perfect world were everybody has equal access to wealth.

Yes jobs are being outsourced to different countries but thats part and parcel in the process of developing new products, I don't think companies are closing because of this. This company Herehere recruits for UK engineers and they literally have thousands of jobs listed, i think you would find the same if you did a search in your local area too.

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 03 October 2011 04:18 AM
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deleted_1_Nimer

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jencam; I apologise if I may unintentionally strike a cord with you, but I wouldn't say that your claim is completely true (especially since the recession & globalisation is more than just "trying to keep war in the Middle-East alive," according to your seemingly narrow-minded view of politics, world issues & your obvious disdain for American & Israeli government establishments).

The outsourcing of any job isn't exactly/completely because a government caused it; it's mostly because of a company's requirements to meet certain budget limits. If they spend too much money, they don't meet the budget. If they cut certain expenses, they may meet their budget. Ultimately, human resources are seen as an expense by executives; one which they may be willing to cut in order to maintain the budget. This may still hold true in spite of the amount of corruption that may be involved in paying executive salaries/bonuses.

Some companies need to cut the amount of workers to cut the amount of money that goes to their pay &, if they still require the man-power, that's when they decide to outsource to countries where workers can be payed a significantly (& sometimes illegally) lower wage than local labour. This, I can agree with you on; governments aren't doing enough to regulate the opulent profit gains & spending habits of some executives.

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Technology: something that's hated & cursed at by all engineers, technologists & technicians!

( Lousy modern technology! )
 08 October 2011 04:54 PM
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jencam

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Originally posted by: tobibaker
Without Globalisation people like you and me in america and the UK wouldn't have access to half of the massive array of products that we have access to.


There was a time when Britain was the workshop of the world and our industries could make almost anything society wanted.

Globalisation is is a fundamental precursor to a perfect world were everybody has equal access to wealth.


And so was communism...

Some economists have talked about the great global levelling of salaries. This means that salaries will rise in low wage countries but will also fall in high wage countries to reach equilibrium. This doesn't apply to the salaries of the super rich.

Originally posted by: Nimer
The outsourcing of any job isn't exactly/completely because a government caused it; it's mostly because of a company's requirements to meet certain budget limits. If they spend too much money, they don't meet the budget. If they cut certain expenses, they may meet their budget. Ultimately, human resources are seen as an expense by executives; one which they may be willing to cut in order to maintain the budget. This may still hold true in spite of the amount of corruption that may be involved in paying executive salaries/bonuses.


It's also caused by the finance houses. They are often only willing to offer investment to companies on conditions of offshoring production to low wage countries. The global financial elite is the driving force behind globalisation of the economy.
 12 October 2011 03:12 AM
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deleted_1_Nimer

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Originally posted by: jencam
There was a time when Britain was the workshop of the world and our industries could make almost anything society wanted.


Yes; the Victorian era, when the British Empire invaded foreign nations, used foreign primary materials & refined them as finished products for local use. You seem to argue against globalisation in spite of the UK's imperial history being a prime example of it.

The reason England was an empire (running through the various multinational corporations it formed, including the Hudson's Bay Company, the East India Company & others,) was because England had NONE of the materials that your "workshop" could fabricate out of thin air for "society" (which, in reality, was initially strictly for local business, until foreign investors from Europe & America came along; how do you like that for globalisation?).

Now, imagine if the Victorian England could get oil without setting foot into Middle East. How do you think Victorian England would have faired into the modern age, had it not used Arabic oil as fuel for the engines that sailed British products to foreign markets? It's not like The British oil industry had the technology to safely tap into the North Sea at that time.

Of course, the financial elite has something to do with it; it was purely the British financial elite (who owned & founded the different industries of today) that pushed for such expansion in order to take advantage of the opportunities that British colonisation created (with both negative & positive impacts; most former British colonies are currently destitute, but a handful have surged economically & socially after gaining financial & national independence).

As for your attestation of financial houses illegally forcing their customers out of their own homeland to receive investment, do you have any proof of this? If you did, maybe there'd be some points that we could both agree with (or I could at least change my own opinions, should it be proven invalid).

-------------------------
Technology: something that's hated & cursed at by all engineers, technologists & technicians!

( Lousy modern technology! )

Edited: 12 October 2011 at 03:28 AM by deleted_1_Nimer
 02 November 2011 08:38 PM
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michaelward

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"Hudson's Bay Company, the East India Company & others,) was because England had NONE of the materials that your "workshop" could fabricate"
That is nonsense.

Think someone need to learn a bit of history before replying
Victorian era was run on coal and steel, both natural resources within the UK. Ships were steam powered not oil powered, which the Imperial Russian state extracted first of all. In fact if it had not been for western investment and drilling, the Arabic states would not have had oil as early as they did.

As far as the main question is concerned, quality research is still done in the UK, and is manufactured in India and China, because the labour costs are a lot less. In fact I have worked for 2 companies, that design for companies in Taiwan, south Korea and Japan, and a friend of mine works for a company in the UK designing for Sega.

Globalisation is pick and choose by companies for the type of product they want. Albeit the far east being still the cheapest place for manufacture.
 13 November 2011 06:50 PM
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jencam

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Nimer's knowledge of history isn't very strong...

It was the era preceding the industrial revolution which set the infrastructure in place for it to happen in Britain. First there was the age of exploration followed by conquest of the New World which later spawned a commercial and financial sector in Europe. By the early 18th century it was getting a bit bored and restless because the New World had largely been conquered and it's gold plundered, so it needed something new to make money from. The answer was manufacturing. It's interesting to know that the industrial revolution could theoretically have started in China. In 1700 China had vast deposits of coal and iron ore and a large population comparable to that of Europe. Why did it not happen there? Simply because of the lack of this commercial and financial sector to make it happen.
 16 November 2011 03:44 PM
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eswnl

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What sort of engineering jobs can't or aren't being offshored? What engineering jobs are there left in the UK?
 16 November 2011 07:07 PM
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jencam

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Originally posted by: michaelward
As far as the main question is concerned, quality research is still done in the UK, and is manufactured in India and China, because the labour costs are a lot less. In fact I have worked for 2 companies, that design for companies in Taiwan, south Korea and Japan, and a friend of mine works for a company in the UK designing for Sega.


But for how much longer? I'm old enough to remember that 25 years ago critics argued that manufacturing was finished in the UK, and that schools should stop teaching old fashioned subjects like woodwork and metalwork, but instead, should teach about computers because that's where the future of the economy lies. Since 2000 countless thousands of IT and software jobs have been offshored to low wage countries to the point where critics are arguing that schools should stop teaching about computers because IT is finished in the UK, and instead, bring back good old fashioned woodwork and metalwork because carpentry and plumbing is impossible to offshore so it's here to stay in the UK.

Originally posted by: eswnl

What sort of engineering jobs can't or aren't being offshored? What engineering jobs are there left in the UK?


Read above.

Has anybody got any figures for the number of electronic and software engineers who are now working in the construction sector?
 18 November 2011 11:14 AM
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dvaidr

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Tony Bliar's government has a lot to answer. They saw the UK as a runway and airport for the US. Thankfully, it didn't come to that but manufacturing was decimated. Thanks must go Uncle Tony and his band of freaks.
 19 November 2011 07:55 AM
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jencam

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I'm of the opinion that manufacturing in the UK declined faster under Blair than at any time during the Thatcher decade. However, it would have declined equally fast if the Conservatives had won the 1997 general election regardless of whether Major, Clarke, Portillo, Howard, Hague, Redwood, or whoever was our PM. It's the policy that's the problem rather than the party or its leader.
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