With falling wages and rising inequality, persistent unemployment, failing schools, and broken cities, have America's best days come and gone? In America Needs Talent, Jamie Merisotis, a globally recognized leader in philanthropy, higher education, and public policy, explains why talent is needed to usher in a new era of innovation and success and why deliberate choices must be made by government, the private sector, education, and individuals to grow talent in America. What if you paid for education based on what you actually learned instead of the time you spent in class? What if your visa application were processed as if you were an asset to our nation's growing talent pool instead of by Homeland Security? Merisotis proposes bold ideas to successfully deploy the world's most talented people - from rethinking higher education to transforming immigration laws, revitalizing urban hubs, and encouraging private sector innovation. The outlook may be gloomy now, but it doesn't need to be. The second American Century can happen - by developing and deploying the next thinkers, makers, and risk takers who will power America's knowledge economy in the 21st century.