As trade talks between Washington and Beijing intensified earlier this year, suspected Chinese hackers broke into an industry group for U.S. manufacturers that has helped shape President Donald Trump’s trade policies, according to two people familiar with the matter.
The use of robotics will increase productivity and has the potential to bring more manufacturing production work back to developed countries. As productivity increases, labor is likely to receive a significant share of the benefits.
Manufacturing USA recently released its 2018 annual report highlighting the progress its 14 associated institutes have made in growing the Manufacturing USA network, increasing manufacturing technology development and technology transfer, and promoting workforce development.
By investing in digital and smart manufacturing, the U.S. can lead the world in manufacturing productivity, energy efficiency and innovation. But we must do so in a cyber secure manner. The challenge is enormous and the complexity of cybersecurity grows bigger every day with the explosion of digital linkages between manufacturers, suppliers, customers and employees along with the digitization of products and services.
NASA recently tasked a company to open production on the spacecraft that will bring astronauts to the moon as part of the Artemis program. Lockheed Martin -- the builder of the Orion spacecraft for moon missions -- received a contract promising at least six spacecraft orders from NASA.
Apple’s insanely expensive new desktop computer will be made in the United States -- not China, the company announced Monday. The $6,000 Mac Pro will be built at Apple’s Austin, Texas, plant following US trade regulators approving 10 requests for tariff exemptions filed by Apple for computer parts.
As automation and technology change the nature of work from physical to technical labor, as manufacturing jobs transition from physical assembly-line occupations to those tied to supporting automation and robotics, a strong STEM skill set will be of the utmost importance in the new economy.Unfortunately, this skill set is exactly what our workforce lacks at the moment. In recent years, the skills gap has received much attention, and rightfully so.
Manufacturers are aware and concerned about the aging of their manufacturing workforce, according to a recent report from the Manufacturing Institute’s Center for Manufacturing Research. The report notes that a recent outlook survey found that attracting and retaining a quality workforce is one of the top challenges facing manufacturers, where nearly one-quarter of the sector’s workforce is age 55 or older.
Underscoring the complexity of the U.S.-China trade relationship, careful observers will notice that there are more than two sides vying for influence at the table as negotiations continue in search of a possible deal. In fact, when it comes to the most important strategic question at the very heart of the dispute--what to do about China’s mercantilist campaign to dominate global markets for key advanced technologies--there are at least three contending positions on the U.S. side alone.
Between 1940 and 2016, employment in manufacturing shifted across America from the Northeast to the Midwest and the Southeast. The industry lost ground in many places and is now the largest employer in only two states--Indiana and Wisconsin. In 1940, 23% of workers were employed in the manufacturing industry, and they were concentrated in 15 northeastern, mid-Atlantic, and Great Lakes states. As the economy shifted toward services at the beginning of the new millennium, the share of employment in manufacturing declined to less than 15%.