Edited by John R. Bryson, Jennifer Clark and Vida Vanchan
Chapter 8: Engineering and manufacturing: concurrent maturation of xRL
There is abundant evidence that manufacturing is a critical sector of a nation’s economy for building wealth. A number of studies from governments, corporations, policy institutes and academic institutions support this assertion and indicate that “making things” is an important way to improve a society’s standard of living (Duesterberg, 2013). The United States recently highlighted four key benefits of a robust manufacturing sector (Report to the President, 2012): 1. 70 percent of exports consist of manufactured goods; 2. one manufacturing job produces an additional six related supply chain jobs and ten jobs in the general economy; 3. 66 percent of scientists and engineers are employed in manufacturing; and 4. more than 50 percent of national research and development expenditures are made in manufacturing. A robust manufacturing sector is also critical to a country’s national security because modern militaries rely on advanced weapon systems and communication platforms to maintain superiority.
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