manufacturing

New A.T. Kearney report fuels debate over U.S. trade policy’s effect on reshoring

A recent report from global management consulting firm A.T. Kearney calls into doubt the ability of U.S. trade policy in encouraging domestic manufacturing firms to reshore their production efforts. Following the government’s release of 2018 trade data, A.T. Kearney published the findings from its sixth annual Reshoring Index, which compares year-over-year changes in U.S. manufacturing gross output to imports of manufactured goods from 14 traditionally low-cost country (LCC) trading partners in Asia.

Ten states selected for manufacturing-focused Policy Academy

Ten states from across the country have been selected as part of a unique program designed to grow and strengthen their manufacturers. Over the course of the next year, interdisciplinary state teams will meet together in Washington, D.C., and separately in their home states, to develop and refine strategies impacting manufacturing industries.

Report highlights changing geographical trends in U.S. manufacturing

A recent report from Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce (CEW) details the changes in manufacturing’s geographic concentration across the country between 1940 and 2016. Manufacturing was the largest source of employment in 15 states in 1940, concentrated in the Northeast and Midwest, and had grown to the largest source of employment in 18 states by 2000, concentrated in the Southeast and central states. However, manufacturing was the largest source of employment in only Indiana and Wisconsin by 2016.

New manufacturing initiative needed to reclaim American leadership

Sending a cautionary note and calling for a new initiative, a new report from MForesight takes a look at the challenges facing America’s leadership in advanced manufacturing. The short-term strategy of “invent here, make there,” has led to the erosion of domestic capabilities and has now become “invent there, manufacture there,” say the authors. They believe that reclaiming the country’s leadership in advanced manufacturing will be a complex and long-term undertaking — one that calls for a long-term government National Manufacturing Initiative.

Report highlights challenges, lessons learned for reshoring advanced manufacturing companies

Reshoring manufacturing companies claim to be able to innovate at increasing rates, but some cite challenges with hiring qualified workers and with the country’s regulatory and trade policy environment, according to a new report from Select USA, a national program led by the U.S. Department of Commerce focused on business investment.  In Reinvesting in the USA: A Case Study of Reshoring and Expanding in the United States, authors from Select USA look at the experiences of six manufacturing companies that chose to reinvest in their U.S. operations, providing detail on what drove them to reshore, challenges and benefits to the move, and general lessons learned. They find that, although the reshoring process was more expensive and time consuming than the case companies expected, local partners such as economic development agencies provided valuable resources to make the process easier. 

Small-batch manufacturing needs connections to grow

In a recent report focused on the impact of the small-scale manufacturing sector, the Urban Manufacturing Alliance (UMA) compiled what they say is a first-ever examination of what this emerging sector looks like and what may help charge its growth. They found an information gap on these businesses, as many of them combine design, art and production, and fall outside of data collection categories used to classify manufacturers. The report begins to identify the role and economic potential of these emerging businesses to help local stakeholders identify actions they might take to grow the small-scale manufacturing sector.

Manufacturing rebound broad but uneven, report shows

Manufacturing growth is helping fuel one of the longest expansions in the U.S., steadily adding jobs since 2010, according to Economic Innovation Group’s (EIG) recent data brief, Manufacturing’s Real But Patchwork Rebound. While manufacturing job growth has risen over the past two years, the report notes that its growth was broad but uneven. Counties in western states saw the highest annual growth rates from December 2016 to December 2018, and the South saw the largest number of new manufacturing jobs over that period: 173,900. However, authors Kenan Fikri and August Benzow also found that after two years of accelerated growth, the U.S. manufacturing sector is showing signs of slowing down.

Upjohn: ROI of Manufacturing Extension Partnership eclipses 14:1

The National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) Program generates a sizeable financial return on investment for the federal government, according to a recent study by the Michigan-based W.E. Upjohn Institute. The $140 million invested in MEP during FY 2018 by the federal government generated more than $2.0 billion in increased federal personal income tax, a ROI of roughly 14.4:1 according to Upjohn researchers Jim Robey, Randall Eberts, Brian Pittelko, and Claudette Robey. Based on direct, indirect, and induced jobs generated by projects at MEP centers, the authors also find evidence that total employment in the U.S. was nearly 240,000 jobs higher than it would have been without the program.

Bipartisan bill would improve Manufacturing USA

Eight U. S. senators introduced a bill last week, endorsed by SSTI and more than two dozen organizations, that would provide performing Manufacturing USA centers with a path for continued federal support, while also better-incorporating the centers into other manufacturing and innovation resources around the country. Senators Chris Coons (D-Del.), Cory Gardner (R-Colo.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.), Gary Peters (D-Mich.), Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), and Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) represent a bipartisan coalition that is well-positioned to support the legislation through the U. S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation. The full text of the bill can be found here.

Analysis finds software accounts for nearly one-third of business R&D, up 60 percent over 10-years

Software plays an increasingly large role in private sector research and development (R&D) expenditures, according to new research from the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics (NCSES) and the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). Based on a recent change in how the BEA treats software R&D in its calculations for gross domestic product (GDP) and other metrics, the analysis finds that the share of business R&D coming from software increased from 20 percent in 2006 to 32 percent in 2016, a 60 percent increase. The authors also look at longer-term trends in business R&D expenditures on software, as well as an analysis of software R&D in manufacturing and non-manufacturing industries.

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