Table of Contents

Handbook of Manufacturing Industries in the World Economy

Handbook of Manufacturing Industries in the World Economy

Research Handbooks in Business and Management series

Edited by John R. Bryson, Jennifer Clark and Vida Vanchan

This interdisciplinary volume provides a critical and multi-disciplinary review of current manufacturing processes, practices, and policies, and broadens our understanding of production and innovation in the world economy. Chapters highlight how firms and industries modify existing processes to produce for established and emerging markets through dynamic and design-driven strategies. This approach allows readers to view transformations in production systems and processes across sectors, technologies and industries. Contributors include scholars ranging from engineering to policy to economic geography. The evidence demonstrates that manufacturing continues to matter in the world economy.

Chapter 5: Reshoring and the “manufacturing moment”

Margaret Cowell and John Provo

Subjects: business and management, strategic management, geography, economic geography, urban and regional studies, regional studies


Outspoken politicians and academics have argued that we are on the verge of a manufacturing moment,” as manufacturing in the U.S. and other developed nations is poised to regain at least some of its competitive position. Though not yet robust, a continued growth of manufacturing activity in these nations seems increasingly plausible, at least in certain key industries. In the U.S., manufacturing employment has increased 4.4 percent since a recent low of 1.14 million jobs in January 2010 (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics 2013). Boston Consulting Group (BCG) predicts that manufacturing growth could create between 2 and 3 million jobs in the next decade, with an estimated 600,000 to 1 million of them direct manufacturing jobs (Sirkin et al. 2012, p. 12). The Brookings Institution, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank, similarly predicts continued growth in high-wage manufacturing industries and those with high shipping costs, as well as modest growth in durable goods manufacturing, which is generally the middle-wage, more productive part of manufacturing (Helper et al. 2012). In the U.S., much of this predicted job growth is likely to come from the anticipated increase in exports that we can expect to accompany a burgeoning manufacturing sector.

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