Paul Graham writes about the magic and magnetism of Silicon Valley:
Startups happen in clusters. There are a lot of them in Silicon Valley and Boston, and few in Chicago or Miami. A country that wants startups will probably also have to reproduce whatever makes these clusters form.
I’ve claimed that the recipe is a great university near a town smart people like. If you set up those conditions within the US, startups will form as inevitably as water droplets condense on a cold piece of metal. But when I consider what it would take to reproduce Silicon Valley in another country, it’s clear the US is a particularly humid environment. Startups condense more easily here.
It is by no means a lost cause to try to create a silicon valley in another country. There’s room not merely to equal Silicon Valley, but to surpass it. But if you want to to do that, you have to understand the advantages startups get from being in America.