The COVID-19 pandemic has had overwhelming impacts on our economy, not to mention the impact on lives and personal wellness. The critical lack of medical equipment to treat and protect those affected highlights the over-reliance of United States manufacturing sector on overseas production. The offshoring issue extends beyond current pandemic concerns, however, reaching far larger and more permanent concerns over industrial supply chains, worker training and even national security.
Research shows SBIR/STTR grants play a critical role in translating research and development (R&D) into commercially successful companies that would not happen otherwise. SBIR/STTR grants could, in theory, provide critical initial investment for many communities outside the large investment hubs and/or disadvantaged high-tech entrepreneurs who struggle to access private capital. The authors explored the distribution of grant awards from 2005 to 2017 using the SBIR/STTR award database.
Smart manufacturing depends critically on information governance: rules (formal and informal) concerning the collection, flow, and analysis of information, often in digital form. To explore information governance issues in depth, the Manufacturing Policy Initiative at Indiana University hosted a roundtable event in Washington, DC, with executives from nearly 20 manufacturers. Policy experts from academia were asked to contribute to papers on specific topics including AI in manufacturing.