Big M Conference Returns to Detroit; Includes Workshop to ‘Build’ Cars in 4 Hours


When the Big M manufacturing conference returns to Detroit in June, it will bring with it the option to participate in a hands-on workshop during which teams will assemble a car over the course of four, 60-minute “sprints.”

The exercise will introduce participants to Scrum, a manufacturing method designed to add energy, focus, clarity, and transparency to project planning and implementation, says Joe Justice, founder of Seattle-based Wikispeed, a green automotive-prototyping company that speeds up traditional manufacturing processes by compressing the entire development cycle into a single week.

“(Participants will) learn about and gets hands-on experience with the benchmarked, fastest tools, and processes for new product development and manufacturing,” Justice says.

The workshop is just one of the interactive programs that will allow attendees to get practical experience with the latest technologies, says Christine Longroy, event manager of The Big M, to be held June 2-4 at Detroit’s Cobo Center.

The event, hosted by the Dearborn-based nonprofit SME, will also include a lineup of sessions focused on emerging manufacturing technologies, including advanced materials, rapid/additive manufacturing, automated manufacturing, R&D, and tooling.

“Here, manufacturers will demonstrate and review the latest advances in technology and find the solutions that will enable them to manufacture for the future,” Longroy says.

For more information about The Big M, which drew more than 6,000 people to Cobo Center in 2014, visit