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Producing Prosperity: Why America Needs a Manufacturing Renaissance Hardcover – October 16, 2012
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The prescriptions they offer are not only timely but they are also realistic goals that are within our grasp.” Trend & Manufacturing Alert
ADVANCE PRAISE for Producing Prosperity:
Lawrence H. Summers, President Emeritus and Charles W. Eliot Professor, Harvard University; former Secretary of the Treasury of the United States
America will still face critical economic challenges long after the financial crisis. Pisano and Shih make the best argument yet that a renewed focus on manufacturing is crucial for our economic future. Their work should be closely considered by anyone concerned with the future of the American economy.”
Wendell Weeks, Chairman and CEO, Corning Incorporated
Pisano and Shih understand the critical link between manufacturing and innovation. They make a powerful case for why a renewed focus on manufacturing is vital to restoring America’s global competitiveness.”
Charles Vest, President, National Academy of Engineering; President Emeritus, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
In this data-driven book, Pisano and Shih argue persuasively that to launch an American manufacturing renaissance, we must strengthen the human capital, policy, and basic infrastructure that are our industrial commons.’ Their message must be heededretaining the ability to innovate is far more important than retaining specific industries.”
Regina Dugan, Senior Vice President, Advanced Technology & Projects, Motorola Mobility; former Director, DARPA
The authors declare, When a country loses the ability/capacity to manufacture, it loses the ability to innovate.’ I couldn’t agree more. We do need a renaissance in manufacturing. Now.”
Ralph Gomory, Research Professor, Stern School of Business, New York University; National Medal of Science recipient
Pisano and Shih’s concepts of the industrial commons,’ and of competing through capabilities, are essential for understanding what is actually happening to American manufacturing and what is needed to restore it.”
Sergio Marchionne, CEO, Fiat; Chairman and CEO, Chrysler Group LLC
This timely book is a wake-up call for American policy makers and business leaders. It urges us all to look hard into the rearview mirror.”
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Top Customer Reviews
Authors Pisano and Shih wrote in a July-August, 2009 Harvard Business Review article that 'Decades of outsourcing has left U.S. industry without the means to invent the next generation of high-technology products that are key to rebuilding its economy.' Now, their book 'Producing Prosperity' extends that theme, contending the reinvesting in American manufacturing is necessary both for creating jobs and for maintaining our lead in innovation.
Referring back to times when farmers and locals townspeople brought their livestock to a local pasture ('the commons') that everyone could use and suffered when the commons was neglected, they analogize that modern industries similarly benefit or suffer from a more complex form of industrial commons. Today's industrial commons consists of webs of technological know-how, operational capabilities, and specialized skills held by the workforce, competitors, suppliers, customers, and universities that often support multiple industrial sectors.
They then set out three important themes. 1)When a country loses the capability to manufacture, it also loses the ability to innovate. Innovation/R&D are often (eg.Read more ›
Pisano and Shih make an indisputable case that exporting manufacturing not only deprives America of jobs and income. It erodes the industrial commons that sustain innovation, etc.
My first unanswered question is why the U.S., with its historic traditions, natural assets and aptitude for manufacturing, should have suffered such disproportional loss of manufacturing in the first place.
Why should we need a book to convince people that no advanced nation can function without ability to manufacture a full range of products?
In contrast to the U.S., advanced European nations with higher wage costs have kept or expanded their traditional industries.Think of Germany, the world's leading truckmaker, with four profitable automakers, machine tools, dyes and chemicals, its historic optical industries (Leica and Zeiss), and increasing share of specialized equipment in the U.S.Little Sweden should embarrass us. Besides its popular exports to the U.S.,like IKEA home furnishings, Brita water filters, mattrasses, pharmaceuticals,and alcoholic beverages, Sweden is the world's second truckmaker. Similar stories can be told for the industrial sectors of Italy, France, Austria,Netherlands, and Finland.
The second omission is that manufacturing is not merely neglected in the U.S. Until very recently it was stigmatized. It began in the 1960s - remember the biting sarcasm around "plastics" in the 1968 film,
In the atmosphere of environmental crisis following the Santa Barbara offshore oil spill of 1969, Congress tacitly assumed that manufacturing and industry were the principal threats to environment and health.Read more ›
The book uses many data and interesting examples from different industries to support its argument. Several stories related to technology industries resonant with my experience doing field research in Taiwan several years ago. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to understand why America has lost its competitiveness and innovativeness in recent years and how to restore them.
The authors of Producing Prosperity (Harvard Business Review Press), Gary Pisano and Willy Shih, both professors from Harvard Business School, look abroad and direct our attention to Germany and Switzerland where national economies have a strong foundation in high-quality manufacturing. Switzerland is an economic powerhouse and this year topped the overall rankings of 144 national economies in The Global Competitiveness Report 2012-2013 of the World Economic Forum (WEF) for the fourth consecutive time. This analysis allows some insights into the sources and forces that contribute to this remarkable and consistent performance. The United States ranks as number 7 in this comparative report. Interestingly in high-tech Switzerland every fifth Swiss Franc is earned in manufacturing, while in the U.S. in 2010 manufacturing accounted only for 12% of the GDP and employed only 9% of the workforce. Pisano and Shih move the loss of manufacturing and the coupled loss of innovative capability into the center of their investigation of what went wrong in the American economy. They show us what happened since 1950 when America still earned 27% of the GDP in manufacturing and employed a third of the workforce in this sector. They also tell us why this economic decline happened resulting in a loss of competitiveness as a consequence of a concomitant decline in innovative strength in the respective technological sectors. Key consequences of the outsourcing of manufacturing to cheaper-producing (mainly Asian) countries are high trade deficits, rising unemployment, and astronomical national dept. Hardly noticed, a decline of innovative strength was the most devastating consequence of the outsourcing folly.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I enjoyed this book. I have a great interest in the role of science, research and development in government policy, and the book helped me understand more about this. Read morePublished 20 months ago by Alastair MacAndrew
For a thought provoking read that causes a reflection on America's economic strength and the choices/impact on the future.Published 21 months ago by Paul Kosieracki
It has a candid point but for the most part the book is far too wordy for what points the authors are trying to drive across.Published on May 31, 2014 by Kandace C. Allen
The authors build their book around the concept of an "Industrial Commons" which is a common pool of experience/knowledge derived from closely linked designing and manufacturing in... Read morePublished on May 25, 2013 by Baraniecki Mark Stuart
Compelling case presented for investing in and restoring manufacturing in the U.S. that goes beyond just the need for more jobs today. Read morePublished on March 3, 2013 by Thomas Guevara
great read--logical premise but well articulated --Pisano and Shih show a path to winning-- Willy Shih is an engaging personalityPublished on January 30, 2013 by C. korizno