Manufacturing Prosperity: A Bold Strategy for National Wealth and Security


Invent here, manufacture there.

For decades, it’s been the strategy of many American manufacturing firms. But today, as many firms invest in overseas R&D, they’ve taken the trend a step further: “Invent there, manufacture there.” This strategy poses a serious challenge to national prosperity and security.

This year, MForesight: Alliance for Manufacturing Foresight conducted a series of roundtables with diverse academic experts, business leaders, and policymakers in cities across the United States to address this “grand challenge” for America’s manufacturing sector. The goal was to identify actionable ideas for public and private stakeholders to reverse the trend and strengthen the underlying foundations of U.S. innovation and manufacturing.

Today, MForesight is pleased to release the report — Manufacturing Prosperity — presenting a detailed look at the challenges and opportunities for U.S. innovation and industrial competitiveness. Download & read the report (PDF).

When it comes to restoring U.S. competitiveness, one thing is clear: the job is too big for any one sector or government agency. Manufacturing cuts across multiple disciplines and affects the missions of multiple federal agencies. To restore manufacturing leadership — and to restore the nation’s ability to capture wealth from innovation — public and private stakeholders need to coordinate and think long-term. A central focal point for manufacturing R&D in the federal government that can maintain the needed long-term focus is the key missing element in our R&D ecosystem. With this in mind the report identifies a range of critical next steps across several categories:

(1) investing in translational research and manufacturing innovation
(2) encouraging pilot production and scale-up for U.S. industry
(3) empowering small and medium-sized manufacturers
(4) growing domestic engineering and technical talent

On Wednesday, June 13 in Washington, DC, MForesight will host leading thinkers from across relevant fields to comment on the report and look ahead regarding implementation priorities as part of the 2018 MForesight National Summit. We look forward to your comments and questions on the report and invite your participation in this and future MForesight conferences. Download & read the MForesight National Summit program booklet (PDF).

This is the moment to implement a comprehensive strategy to restore U.S. global leadership.