Nominations are open for Manufacturing Institute’s 2015 STEP Awards Program

The Manufacturing Institute announced that it is accepting applications for the 2015 STEP Awards program, a national awards program to honor women who have demonstrated excellence and leadership in manufacturing. Part of the Science, Technology, Engineering and Production (STEP) Ahead initiative, STEP Awards aim to recognize women at all levels of manufacturing. These awards illustrate the widespread impact women have on shaping the industry, whether they are running the company, designing the next big product, or testing innovations on the shop floor.

“Recoupling” Manufacturing and Innovation

Between 2000 and 2010, about one-third of U.S. manufacturing employment – approximately five million jobs – were lost as a result of new technologies in the manufacturing process or competition from abroad, according to The Brookings Institution.

MEP Announces Competitions for Operation of 10 MEP State Centers

The Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) released federal funding opportunity award competitions for the operation of MEP state centers. States up for competition include Colorado, Connecticut, Indiana, Michigan, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia.

New York Launches New $500M Semiconductor Partnership

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the creation of the Power Electronics Manufacturing Consortium, a 100-member public-private partnership between public research universities, private sector companies, and other research partners to develop next generation of materials and processes used in the manufacturing of wide band gap semiconductors.

NIST To Open New Competitions for MEP Centers Across the Country

Over the next three years, the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) plans to hold open competitions for MEP center cooperative agreements in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. The process will begin with a demonstration program this summer, in which competitions will be held in six to 10 states in each of MEP’s six regions.

Weak Innovation Policy Environment Hampers U.S. Competitiveness, Finds ITIF

In recent decades as many countries have developed sophisticated national innovation strategies, the U.S. has generally avoided attempts to introduce a coordinated innovation policy system. Instead, U.S. leaders have placed their trust in the market, rather than the government, to generate knowledge, products and businesses. A new report from the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF) suggests that this approach ignores a major factor in the success of innovation economies.

Manufacturing Resurgence Attracts Attention of State Legislatures

The recent uptick in U.S. manufacturing activity, along with the attention generated by additive manufacturing and the Makers movement, has led to an increase in state initiatives to help cash in on this growth. In recent months, New York, Connecticut, Maryland, and Arizona have all taken steps to build stronger manufacturing sectors through research collaborations, grants and tax credits. Leaders in Colorado and New Jersey have pursued their own cluster-specific efforts to build stronger high-tech industries.

White House Enlists Makers, Cities to Spur National Manufacturing Economy

This week, the White House hosted its first Maker Faire where President Obama announced a number of new public-private collaborative efforts to spur U.S. manufacturing entrepreneurship. In order to capitalize on the recent spike in manufacturing entrepreneurship, the administration is enlisting more than 90 mayors and local leaders to make new spaces available for manufacturing and prototyping.

Manufacturing Back on the Rise, According to Commerce Department

Between December 2007 and February 2010, the manufacturing sector loss 2.3 million jobs, according to the Department of Commerce. This drastic decline accounted for about one-quarter of the negative shock experienced during those 26 months and the loss in manufacturing represented one-half the decline in U.S. GDP. In the aftermath of this decline, both public and private sector leaders began to search desperately for ways to stop the bleeding. A new Commerce report, Manufacturing Since the Great Recession, indicates that we may have found some success in halting the hemorrhage.

Commerce Department Names First 12 Communities for Manufacturing Support Initiative

This week, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker announced the first 12 communities to participate in the federal government’s multi-agency Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership (IMCP) initiative. The initiative will concentrate federal economic development spending across agencies and departments on key manufacturing regions with strong economic strategies in place. Eleven federal agencies and programs, managing  $1.3 billion in federal economic development assistance, will coordinate their efforts to support the strategies developed by the 12 designated communities.


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