Skills and innovation strategies to strengthen manufacturing: Lessons from Germany

February 26, 2015, Joseph Parilla, Jesus Leal Trujillo and Alan Berube

In November 2014 the Global Cities Initiative, a joint project of Brookings and JPMorgan Chase, brought 40 U.S. business, civic, and government leaders to Munich and Nuremberg, Germany to learn more about the German model for manufacturing competitiveness. For U.S. practitioners and policymakers interested in applying German best practices in their own places, this paper serves to document the key discussion themes and potential lessons from that trip. It provides a brief overview of the current state of manufacturing in each country, the German systems for innovation and vocational education and training, and concludes with examples of how U.S. leaders are applying the most successful elements of these German systems to the American context.

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