MIT Technology Review Why Manufacturing Matters

“Manufacturing is not merely about giving people jobs. The next generation of technological innovations is intimately tied to production processes.”

In an article published in the MIT Technology Review on July 1, Suzanne Berger,  a professor of political science at MIT who  co-chairs the Institute’s Production in the Innovation Economy project, makes the case that future technology innovation will not follow the pattern established over the last three  decades by the information technology sector.

“The experiences of successful firms over the past 30 years make it plausible to think that manufacturing can be outsourced and offshored without any damage to the engines of innovation. Once it was possible to codify the different stages of the journey from conception to final product and to break design apart from production, major new industries could arise around enterprises like Apple, Qualcomm, and Cisco. … [However,] There is a close connection between R&D and manufacturing in many of the emerging sectors (wind and solar, biotech, new materials, batteries and others) because modularization may just not work as well for these technologies as it has for IT. R&D engineers may have to stay close to manufacturing to develop new strategies for making processes more efficient.”

From the PIE web site: “MIT’s Production in the Innovation Economy (PIE) project seeks to analyze the state of production in the United States and to propose new routes from innovation through manufacturing to jobs and growth in the United States. … Those countries that can build powerful links between research in the laboratory and new manufacturing will emerge as the ones that benefit the most from their innovative capabilities.”

Posted by MAGNET Ohio in Economic-Issues-For-Mfgs, Global-Markets, Innovation, Market-Diversification, Regulatory-Issues

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