Manufacturing Isn’t Dead, It’s Evolving
In “How Rich Countries Get Rich…and Why Poor Countries Stay Poor,” the Norwegian economist Erik Reinert explains how nations acquire wealth through manufacturing, which creates economies of scale and increased productivity. Without a strong manufacturing base, sustaining widespread economic growth is unlikely. But the industry is rapidly changing.
From 2000 to 2010, manufacturing shredded one-third of jobs due to automation, offshoring and global competition. There has been a moderate resurgence in domestic manufacturing since the Great Recession, and rising labor costs overseas mean that companies may be less inclined to move offshore. But to take advantage of these trends, the focus must be on the future instead of nostalgia for 1960s-style assembly lines, according to a recent McKinsey report.
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