[photopress:Shanghai_students_celebrate_expo.jpg,full,alignright]More than 130,000 Shanghai students have gone abroad to study since the reform and opening-up of the country. So far, about 56,000 of them have returned, more than 40%. Shanghai must have some special attractions because the figure for the whole of China is around 24%. Only 170 thousand of the total 710 thousand overseas students have returned.
One theory is that as the economic center of China Shanghai is more attractive to returned students. There are very possibly other reasons. (The illustration is of a group of students in Shanghai celebrating the award of Expo 2010 to the city. Perhaps some of that excitement is part of the magnetism.)
In late 2005 Shanghai seriously started trying to get them back. It launched its second round of ‘International Talents Gathering Project’, to attract at least 10,000 from both home and abroad within two years. It took Shanghai only 15 months to reach the goal.
There is little doubt this influx of talent has made a great contribution to Shanghai’s development.