Smart Factories: Bes Way to Create Jobs in U.S. Manufacturing

Rockwell Automation CEO Proposes New U.S. Industrial Policy that Focuses on Innovation, Investment and Education to Support Smart Factories
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DETROIT, June 15, 2009 – Rockwell Automation Chairman and CEO Keith Nosbusch today called for business and government to invest in smart factories that are flexible, efficient and sustainable as the best way to create higher-paying, long-term manufacturing jobs in the United States.

“The public and private sectors need to invest in advanced technology that will lower costs, increase productivity, and make U.S. manufacturing competitive globally,” said Nosbusch. “This investment is the best way to create enduring, higher-wage manufacturing jobs that can compete against other economies with lower costs of doing business.”

Nosbusch spoke today at The National Summit, a gathering hosted by the Detroit Economic Club to promote actions to improve America’s manufacturing competitiveness in the global economy.

Nosbusch also called for a renewed U.S. industrial policy that includes federal stimulus and research and development on industrial automation and information technology, to keep U.S. manufacturing competitive globally.

Nosbusch cited research that shows most Americans believe that highly automated, modern factories are important to grow the U.S. economy. A majority of Americans said the government should provide incentives for companies to invest in advanced technology to improve U.S. manufacturing.

“A $50 billion investment in retooling factories would create 250,000 direct manufacturing jobs in the U.S., support an additional 725,000 indirect jobs, and generate up to $120 billion in revenue resulting from increased demand for products,” said Nosbusch, citing a study by the Apollo Group, a business-labor coalition focused on job creation.

Nosbusch called for the Obama administration to double research and development for manufacturing innovation to bring it back to 1970’s funding levels. “If you really want to invest in long-term, high-quality job creation, you have to invest in innovation,” he said.

“We also need an education system that will train workers to operate these smart factories and produce engineers who develop innovative manufacturing solutions for the future,” he emphasized. “This needs to start with a better pre-school to college STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) talent development pipeline.”

Rockwell Automation, Inc. (NYSE: ROK), the world’s largest company dedicated to industrial automation and information, makes its customers more productive and the world more sustainable. Headquartered in Milwaukee, Wis., Rockwell Automation employs about 20,000 people serving customers in more than 80 countries.

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