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A 'Glass-Half-Full' View of American Manufacturing

Aug. 19, 2013
While it's true that some sectors have not bounced back as quickly as others, it's also true that U.S. manufacturing has led our recovery and holds the keys to strong, sustainable economic growth and national security.

Among the industry experts weighing in on the state of U.S. manufacturing, most are aligned on what needs to be fixed in order to make the industry stronger. The common thread is a call for action to alleviate the U.S. tax and regulatory burden, increase the pace of innovation and address the skilled-labor shortage.

But while we can agree on these broad end results, we don't always agree on the road map to get us there – or even where manufacturing currently stands relative to our economic recovery and competitiveness.

The Association for Manufacturing Technology takes the "glass-half-full" view, explains association president Douglas Woods.

"I see, every day, the great strides our members are making in growing and building their businesses," Woods writes in a recent IndustryWeek article. "They are taking their operations global and expanding into new markets. They are coming up with innovative, groundbreaking technologies that are expanding possibilities beyond what was even imagined just a few short years ago.

"Others, though, don't see the picture quite as positive."

The glass-half-empty contingent, Woods contends, is overlooking "what's really happening in manufacturing."

For more, read "Looking for Good in Manufacturing? You Don't Have to Look Very Hard" in sister publication IndustryWeek.