MIT President Susan Hockfield has long demonstrated an interest in spurring innovation, not just at the Institute but in U.S. manufacturing as well. Now she’s well-poised to act on her interest. President Obama asked Hockfield to co-chair the administration’s new Advanced Manufacturing Partnership (AMP), and Hockfield accepted.
According to the White House, AMP aims to unite the federal government, industry, and universities to identify and invest in key emerging technologies. More than $500 million is being poured into the partnership, which Obama in a press release said would “spark a renaissance in American manufacturing and help our manufacturers develop the cutting-edge tools they need to compete with anyone in the world.”
Hockfield told the MIT News Office that U.S. research universities have played a key role in the nation’s innovation economy.
The longstanding relationships that make this innovation model run—between universities and government, and universities and corporations—remain tremendously productive and important. But as the economy tells us every day, ‘business as usual’ is not enough anymore. America’s remarkably effective model of innovation-based economic growth is now being copied and aggressively invested in by nations around the globe.
To start, AMP will be focusing on building domestic manufacturing capabilities in national security industries, reducing the time required to develop and deploy advanced materials, investing in next-generation robotics, and developing innovative energy-efficient manufacturing processes.