DMDII 2018 Strategic Plan Highlights Three Pilot Programs in Design, Future Factory, and Supply Chain for the Coming Year

Feb 23, 2018

The Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute (DMDII) recently released its Strategic Investment Plan for 2018. The plan outlines the Institute’s directional priorities for the coming year as well as longer-term strategy. In addition, DMDII developed an official mission statement, “Every Part Better than the Last,” to serve as the plan’s thesis.  The statement strives to combine past research with future technological innovations to encapsulate the Institute’s goal “to enable a manufacturing industry that is continually and automatically learning from every sequential part produced to make the very next part even better than the last.”

Since its inception in 2010, China has consistently been ranked as the most competitive country for manufacturing in Deloitte’s Global Manufacturing Competitiveness Index report. This is thanks to factors such as the amount of money spent on R&D, the high number of STEM graduates, and leadership in High Performance Computing. But in a twist that contradicts other reports such as the National Science Foundation’s Science and Engineering Index of 2018, the Global Manufacturing Competitiveness Index forecasts the U.S. to overtake China as the most competitive country for manufacturing by 2020 thanks to factors such as “leadership in key advanced technologies such as predictive analytics, internet of things (IoT), smart products, smart factories, IT integration and advanced materials.” DMDII views this deviation from other reports as both a positive and a negative. The 2018 Strategic Plan states that while manufacturing has increasingly been outsourced to lower-labor markets, this may not have had as detrimental an effect on American manufacturing as initially feared per sources such as the Deloitte report.

Since DMDII’s creation in 2014, more than 60 projects spanning all technology areas have received funding. Looking ahead in 2018, the institute is narrowing the scope for three pilot programs in the Design, Future Factory and Supply Chain thrust areas. The Institute is also working with the Department of Defense to lock down funding for a new Cyber Security Hub for Manufacturing.

For further information on DMDII’s 2018 Strategic Plan, click here: http://www.uilabs.org/innovation-platforms/manufacturing/strategic-investment-plan/