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Druanne Martin, OverDrive's Director of publishing services elaborates:
""With Jamaica and Cleveland, Ohio sharing same time zone (EST), we have our US and Jamaican production teams in sync. Jamaica provides a beautiful and warm climate, literally, for us to build long-term partnerships and to invite our publishing and content clients to come and visit their books in production".
The Jamaican Minister of Industry, Commerce and Technology, Hon. Phillip Paulwell reciprocates:
"We are proud that OverDrive has selected Jamaica to extend its leadership in eBook technology. OverDrive is benefiting from investments Jamaica has made in developing needed infrastructure for IT companies to locate and build skilled workforces here."
There is nothing new in outsourcing back office work (insurance claims processing, air ticket reservations, medical records maintenance) to third world countries, such as (the notable example) India. Research and Development is routinely farmed out to aspiring first world countries such as Israel and Ireland. But OverDrive's Jamaican facility is an example of something more sophisticated and more durable. Western firms are discovering immense pools of skills, talent, innovation, and top notch scientific and other education often offered even by poorest of nations. These multinationals entrust locals now with more than keyboarding and responding to customer queries using fake names. The Jamaican venture is a business partnership. In a way, it is a topsy-turvy world. Digital animation is produced in India and consumed in States. The low compensation of scientists attracts technology and R&D arms of likes of General Electric to Asia and Intel to Israel. In other words, there are budding signs of a reversing brain drain - from West to East.
E-publishing is at forefront of software engineering, e-consumerism, intellectual property technologies, payment systems, conversion applications, mobile Internet, and, basically, every important trend in network and computing and digital content. Its migration to warmer and cheaper climates may be inevitable. OverDrive sounds happy enough.
Sam Vaknin is the author of Malignant Self Love - Narcissism Revisited and After the Rain - How the West Lost the East. He is a columnist for Central Europe Review, United Press International (UPI) and eBookWeb and the editor of mental health and Central East Europe categories in The Open Directory, Suite101 and searcheurope.com.
Visit Sam's Web site at http://samvak.tripod.com