Challenges & Options for Wisconsin Component Manufacturing

Joel Rogers, Matt Vidal, Josh Whitford, and Jonathan Zeitlin. Challenges & Options for Wisconsin Component Manufacturing: Final AMP Report to the Wisconsin Manufacturing Extension Partnership. COWS, 2003.

This report summarizes research on Wisconsin component manufacturing undertaken during the recent period (June 2003). The component manufacturing industry group, heavily concentrated in the Upper Midwest, supplies parts and subsystems to the leading national end-user manufacturing industries, including autos; farm, mining, and construction equipment; and electrical appliances. As a sub-sector of manufacturing, it stands in the value chain between machine tools and the large end-user industries it feeds and provides a base. Its critical location makes it an exemplary nexus of more general pressures on U.S. manufacturing, and of great strategic importance in their resolution. Our research has examined those pressures and firm strategy of response in three areas: the relation of supplier firms and their customer OEMs (original equipment manufacturers); intermediary institutions within industry; and public policy.