The event, staged at Cranfield University on May 21, has drawn an impressive line-up of speakers including:
- Lord Alec Broers, Chairman of the House of Lords Science and Technology Committee;
- Michael Fallon, Minister of State for Business and Enterprise;
- Stephen Odell, Chairman & CEO Ford of Europe;
- Maggie Philbin, BBC reporter and CEO of TeenTech.
The debate will discuss the need for a national manufacturing strategy, what it should include and who should deliver it.
Professor Rajkumar Roy, head of Cranfield University’s manufacturing and materials department said: “Against a backdrop of mixed opinions and varying statistics about the state of UK manufacturing, the sector needs a holistic approach to identifying the best way to improve the manufacturing industry’s contribution towards GDP in the UK.
“This event provides an excellent independent forum for delegates to express opinions and share ideas on how this might be achieved and whether a national manufacturing strategy is the most appropriate approach.”
Now in its fourth successful year, the National Manufacturing Debate was founded by Cranfield University to provide a forum for manufacturing professionals from all sectors to discuss current challenges in the industry, and encourage networking and collaboration to enable continued and long-term growth.
Opinion on the state of UK manufacturing is divided. According to the 2013 Global Manufacturing Competitiveness Index report, published by Deloitte, the UK will be increasingly challenged to maintain a competitive edge by emerging nations such as Brazil and India.
However, the latest Manufacturing Advisory Service Barometer showed optimism among UK manufacturers with a huge increase in organisations expecting to take on staff.
Attendance at the debate is free. For more information and to register online, visit www.national-manufacturing-debate.org.uk