Strategic Futurists; Value Systems Specialists

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A Vision for Australian Manufacturing

Thursday 17 February 2011

South East Business Networks, the City of Greater Dandenong's longest running business development program, is an exceptional avenue for learning about issues to do with Manufacturing. This week they provided one 'out of the box' with an excellent presentation by Professor Goran Roos, a worldclass expert on Manufacturing and currently South Australia's Thinker in Residence. With over 100 people in the room he explained some of the challenges Manufacturers face whilst simultaneously busting a few widely held myths about Australia's approach to Manufacturing. There's no doubt that the challenges for many are great and yet amongst them an idea emerged to me regarding Australia's Manufacturing future. We have an opportunity to make the next decade 'The Decade of Australian Manufacturing'

This is no Polly-Anna approach.  It will require some serious work and more importantly it will require significant shifts in the way Government, Industry and the wider community think about Manufacturing and its role for Australia.  All around Australia, and especially in the South East Melbourne area which is justifiably called Australia's Manufacturng heartland, we have worldclass capability across all facets of 'making' - that is in essence what manufacturing means - 'to make'.  From biotechnology, clean room technology, nanotechnology, heavy steel fabrication and more, Australia has the core skills needed.

I sense though the future of manufacturing has a lot less to do with the skills and more about our understanding of how to best utilise those skills.  A commitment to making the next ten years the Decade of Australian Manufacturing will see us position what we can do, how we think and what we can make at the fore front of world class manufacturing for many years to come.  There is a clear opportunity if we are willing to see the future for what it could be, rather than focusing on what the future once was going to be.  Things have changed and our Mannufacturing Future has changed whether we are willing to go there or not.  The difference in our attitude will ultimately determine whether our future is more or less agreeable to us


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