ASME Presents Congressional Briefing on Advanced Manufacturing Communities


Aug. 19, 2016


(Left to right) IBM Fellow Emeritus Nicholas Donofrio, Nam Suh of MIT, ASME Past President J. Robert Sims and Tom Kurfess, former assistant director for Advanced Manufacturing at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, at the ASME Congressional briefing, “Advanced Manufacturing Communities: Encouraging Innovation and Building the Advanced Manufacturing Economy of the Future.”

ASME recently sponsored a Congressional briefing, “Advanced Manufacturing Communities: Encouraging Innovation and Building the Advanced Manufacturing Economy of the Future,” which attracted an audience of more than 100 members of Congress, congressional staff, agency officials, and thought leaders. The packed briefing was convened in conjunction with the House Manufacturing Caucus as part of a series of manufacturing briefings being held throughout the year.

J. Robert Sims, past president of ASME, welcomed the audience and introduced the co-chairs of the Manufacturing Caucus, Congressmen Tim Ryan (D-OH) and Tom Reed (R-NY). The co-chairs provided opening remarks focusing on the key role that advanced manufacturing plays in maintaining and improving the strength of the U.S. economy and highlighted the role of Congress in ensuring proper investments in this field.

The briefing consisted of an impressive panel of experts on advanced manufacturing, which included Nicholas M. Donofrio, IBM Fellow Emeritus, former IBM executive vice president for Innovation and Technology, and recent chair of the National Academy of Engineering’s Study Committee on “Making Value for America”; Nam P. Suh, former president of the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, head of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at MIT, and recipient of the ASME Medal for Distinguished Mechanical Engineering Achievements; and Deborah Wince-Smith, president and CEO of the United States Council on Competitiveness and former assistant secretary for technology policy in the United States Department of Commerce.


Deborah Wince-Smith (left) from the United States Council on Competitiveness and Steve Schmid of the University of Notre Dame were also among the panelists at the briefing in Washington, D.C.

Panelists also included Tom Kurfess, professor and HUSCO/Ramirez Distinguished Chair in Fluid Power and Motion Control at Georgia Tech and former assistant director for Advanced Manufacturing at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy; and Steve Schmid, professor of aerospace and mechanical engineering at the University of Notre Dame and former assistant director for Research Partnerships in the Advanced Manufacturing National Program Office at the National Institute of Standards and Technology. Kurfess and Schmid also serve as co-chairs of the ASME Manufacturing Public Policy Task Force.

The purpose of the briefing was to bring to light the exciting future these experts see for advanced manufacturing in the United States. The discussion focused on innovative solutions that can only be realized with the support of public-private partnerships that encourage the formation of manufacturing communities: places where universities, companies, and local governments work together to promote manufacturing education and innovation. Manufacturing communities work to drive education and training, which can then create a comprehensive innovation ecosystem and skills-pipeline that can only exist in these areas where modern manufacturing is being touted and pursued.

A video of the Advanced Manufacturing Congressional briefing is now available online in three segments. To view parts one and two, visit www.youtube.com/watch?v=WCZbJ64Kels and www.youtube.com/watch?v=E5N_4uDnBM0. To watch part three, visit www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nm1IDOWtrUk.