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The processes and techniques of manufacturing have changed substantially over the decades and that evolution continues today. In order to examine the potential impacts of these changes, the Department of Commerce asked the NRC to design a workshop to focus on issues central to the changing nature of manufacturing. The workshop brought together a number of experts to present papers about and to discuss the current state of manufacturing in the United States and the challenges it faces. This report presents the results of that workshop. Key challenges that emerged from the workshop and that are discussed include understanding manufacturing trends; manufacturing globalization; information technology opportunities; maintaining innovation; strengthening small and medium-sized enterprises; workforce education; and rising infrastructure costs.

Suggested Citation

National Research Council. 2004. New Directions in Manufacturing: Report of a Workshop. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

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Publication Info

156 pages |  8.5 x 11 | 

  • Paperback:  978-0-309-09227-2
  • Ebook:  978-0-309-16592-1
Chapters skim
Front Matter i-x
Executive Summary 1-4
Part I Summary of the Workshop Sessions1 Manufacturing in the United States 5-10
2 Challenges Facing U.S. Manufacturing Today 11-20
3 New Directions 21-22
Part II Presented Papers: Manufacturing in the U.S. Economy4 Keynote Address: The Administration's Manufacturing Policy 23-27
5 U.S. Manufacturing at the Crossroads 28-33
6 Innovation and U.S. Manufacturing 34-38
Part III Presented Papers: View from Three Manufacturing Sectors7 Trends in Rural Manufacturing 39-45
8 Issues for Small Manufacturing Enterprises 46-48
9 Drivers and Challenges for U.S. Aerospace Manufacturing 49-54
Part IV Presented Papers: Manufacturing Globalization10 Manufacturing Globalization: Is the Glass Half Full or Half Empty? 55-60
11 Manufacturing Globalization at United Technologies Corporation 61-64
12 Insights on Outsourcing 65-72
Part V Presented Papers: The Human Element in Manufacturing13 Keeping America Competitive 73-81
14 Economic Challenges to American Manufacturing 82-87
15 The Crisis in U.S. Manufacturing: A Union View 88-90
16 The Human Component in Manufacturing 91-94
Part VI Presented Papers: The Way Forward17 Standards and Infrastructure 95-99
18 Collaborating to Meet Manufacturing Challenges 100-104
19 Manufacturing, Energy, and the Future of New Technology 105-107
20 Army Manufacturing Technology Program Responds to 21st Century Challenges 108-111
21 Turning New Technologies into Products at Sandia National Laboratories 112-114
Part VII Presented Papers: New Manufacturing Paradigm22 Manufacturing in a Digital Era 115-129
23 Manufacturing Knowledge and the Arrow of Time 130-134
Appendix A Biographical Sketches of Committee Members 135-140
Appendix B Workshop Agenda 141-143
Appendix C Acronyms and Abbreviations 144-146

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