Mechanical Engineering magazine, will host a series of conversations to explore how engineers, using technology, can help reboot the economy as the COVID-19 recedes.

The Post-Pandemic Discussions We Must Have

May 13, 2020

by John Falcioni

Going forward, how will we handle threats that we can’t see or touch but that are powerful enough to turn our world upside down?
 
We are struggling to answer that question today. The coronavirus is a pandemic the likes of which we have not seen in generations. What is worse, it is all but certain that this is not the last global crisis we will face.
 
We may one day look back on COVID-19 as a single blip in the history of mankind—or not. But it has opened our eyes to the weaknesses in our industrial ecosystems, especially in the supply chains that we rely on to procure everything from disinfectant and toilet paper to food and medical supplies.

Recommeneded for You: Supply Chains and the Health Crisis
 
There’s a reawakening of the role technology plays in strengthening the complex systems that make us safe, and governments now have greater respect for the value of tech-related solutions. But it’s not just governments. As they wrestle with how to restart local and global economies, entire industries are working to repair fractured supply chains to make them more resilient than ever, and individual companies are embracing improvements that they previously viewed as “nice to haves.”
 
Technology will play an important role in defining our “new normal” as we rethink supply chains, especially for medical products, and create flexible manufacturing networks. We will also rely more heavily on service robots, smart manufacturing, digital twins, and 3D printing.
 
ASME’s flagship publication, Mechanical Engineering magazine, will host a series of conversations to explore how engineers, using technology, can help reboot the economy as the virus recedes. These programs feature in-depth discussions with leading engineers and technologists about building the agile and resilient systems needed to move forward.
 
We call this series “Rebooting After the Pandemic,” and I invite you to join us on six consecutive Tuesdays at 1 pm EDT, beginning May 26 and every Tuesday in June.
 
These conversations will focus on six areas: cleaner and safer workplaces; re-engineering processes and products to provide more flexible sourcing options; creating more resilient and robust supply chains; the emergence of service robots in medical and industrial applications; the use of smarter manufacturing that proved effective during the pandemic; and rebuilding medical supply chains in light of weaknesses exposed by the pandemic. Visit our registration page Joining the Fight Against COVID-19 for more information and to register for open and free access to these conversations.

Watch our Video: ASME Studies the Impact of COVID-19 on Engineering

We’ve learned a lot of new lessons since COVID-19 stripped us of some of our freedoms. Some even say it is creating a new normal. Still, whether that is or is not the case, now is the time to prepare for the post-pandemic world in ways that accommodate any variance from the old normal. We hope you can join for the conversation.   

John Falcioni is Editor-in-Chief of Mechanical Engineering magazine.
 

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