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Thomas J. Duesterberg
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Tom is Executive Director of the Manufacturing and Society in the 21st Century program at the Aspen Institute. He recently retired as President and CEO of the Manufacturers Alliance/MAPI, an economic research and executive education organization based in Arlington, Virginia, with more than 500 manufacturing firms as members. Previous positions include: Director of the Washington Office of The Hudson Institute, Assistant Secretary for International Economic Policy
at the U.S. Department of Commerce, chief of staff to two members of Congress, and associate instructor at Stanford University. His commentary and analysis on manufacturing, economic performance, globalization, and related policy issues can be found in major news outlets. He holds a B.A. degree from Princeton and M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from Indiana University.

Entries by Thomas J. Duesterberg

Why Manufacturers Should Support Ending Crude Oil Export Ban

(0) Comments | Posted October 14, 2014 | 9:15 AM

The largely unanticipated boom in oil production in the last five years has revived a debate over whether the United States should reverse the forty-year old ban on exports of crude oil. Even though we still import around 30 percent of total crude and refined products, the U.S. refinery industry...

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New Paths for Skills Training: Lessons From the 2014 Aspen Ideas Festival

(0) Comments | Posted July 7, 2014 | 8:53 AM

Corporate Executives regularly lament the lack of workers with the mid-level technical skills required in the modern economy. German companies, many fleeing the high cost environment in Europe and envious of the fast growing North American economy, estimate that 570,000 skilled manufacturing workers will be needed in the United States...

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Should We Rethink Our "College for All" Culture?

(0) Comments | Posted June 9, 2014 | 8:24 PM

Late spring is the season for high school and college graduations. It is a time of transition for millions of young people and a time of celebration and hope and promise. Yet the lingering effects of the Great Recession, notably the difficult jobs environment in an economy increasingly beset by...

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Manufacturing Skills Shortages and the Untapped Resource

(0) Comments | Posted March 11, 2014 | 3:55 PM

Manufacturers regularly and consistently report a shortage of skilled and semi-skilled workers for their firms. Shortages are most pronounced for skilled production workers, scientists and engineers, and least evident for unskilled production workers. Unemployment in this sector is already below the national average (5.6 percent versus 6.5 percent) but the...

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Manufacturing the Future: Driving Growth Through Advanced Manufacturing

(1) Comments | Posted October 16, 2013 | 1:19 PM

Manufacturing today is no longer the dirty, dark, and dangerous world it may have been during the early years of American industry. Indeed, advanced manufacturing has the potential to symbolize the broader manufacturing resurgence underway in America as well as play a driving role in the country's overall economic recovery....

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Lessons for the US Workforce: Austria's Vocational Education System

(1) Comments | Posted September 18, 2013 | 4:18 PM

I recently had the opportunity as a guest of the semi-annual George C. Marshall Visit to Austria program to take a close look at the Vocational Education and Training Program (VET) in that small but prosperous country. The term "vocational education" has long had a negative connotation in the United...

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The Apple Business Model Is Good for U. S. Manufacturing

(9) Comments | Posted November 2, 2011 | 2:54 PM

In his November 2, 2011 column in the Washington Post, Harold Myerson takes issue with Walter Isaacson's analysis of the value of the contribution of Steve Jobs and Apple to U.S. economic prosperity. He asserts that we need to build domestic production because without it innovation will disappear....

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U.S. Manufacturing Has a Key Role in the U. S. Economy of the Future

(4) Comments | Posted October 19, 2011 | 4:50 PM

In a Sunday column in the New York Times, Steve Rattner makes a case for building our future economic prosperity on the services sector. Apart from the somewhat perplexing irony of a former auto czar and captain of Wall Street throwing in the towel on manufacturing, his arguments...

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