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Archive for the ‘Offshoring’ Category

The vicissitudes of American manufacturing has been a long running topic on this blog. But whether one focuses on firms that have always kept their production in North America or those that have reshored manufacturing, there is the question of whether China or other Asian countries are going down without a fight. A recent article in The Economist suggests that manufacturing in Asia in general and in China in particular is going to be around for a long, long while (A tightening grip, Mar 14).

First, one has to recognize that the growth in Asian manufacturing over the last 20-plus yeas has been spectacular. Check out this graphic.

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As the article notes, these numbers get a little more extreme if one looks at “intermediate inputs,” doohickeys like displays and circuit boards that go into finished products that may be assembled elsewhere. (more…)

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Three weeks ago, I had the pleasure to visit one branch of my extended family and BMW Welt (BMW World), the “multi-functional customer experience and exhibition facility of the BMW AG, located in Munich, Germany.” Supposedly, BMW Welt is the second most popular tourist destination around Munich, after Neuschwanstein Castle which inspired Disneylands’ Sleeping Beauty Castle. If you like architecture or cars, you should visit BMW Welt.

OK, but this is the Operations Room, so what else is worth knowing? It turns out that this month, BMW starts selling in Germany its long-awaited i3 (the USA will have to wait until 2014) and here’s some personal pictures to highlight three aspects:

(more…)

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Continuing our blogs on offshoring, here is some interesting data from the European Manufacturing Survey conducted in 2009 as studied by Bernhard Dachs, Marcin Borowiecki, Steffen Kinkel and Thomas Christian Schmall (December 2012).  Their survey quantifies the extent, trends, and reasons why European manufacturing firms offshore or re-shore production.  Here is some of their key findings:

(more…)

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So far, our blogs on offshoring have considered its domestic impact in terms of jobs and competitiveness. Today, I report on the first data I have seen to shed light on the link between production offshoring and domestic innovation.  The question is: Do firms that offshore production innovate more or less than firms that do not offshore?  This question has led to national debate on competitiveness. Here is some key data and a data-driven answer:… (more…)

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