Great Lakes Manufacturing Council

Our five focus areas

Image, Innovation, Workforce, Logistics & Borders, and Manufacturing Policy are our key areas of focus. Find out more about each initiative by clicking below.


Hot topics

Making the Case

How best to change the image of manufacturing? By stressing the importance of manufacturing to the U.S. and Canadian future. Image will follow. Join the discussion.

Getting the Facts

How we see ourselves is critical to how others perceive us. Let’s identify as many “Did you know” facts about our region, our states and our provinces, and let’s share them. Join the discussion.

FACT: Growing the Economy

Growing manufacturing is the best way to grow an economy. That’s because manufacturing generally produces the highest multipliers. Manufacturing requires more intermediate goods and capital equipment and pays good wages. According to the Economic Policy Institute, manufacturing employment multipliers range from 175 in apparel to 464 in automobile production to 904 in computer equipment and office machinery. Many of the Great Lakes manufacturing sectors are among the higher manufacturing multipliers.

Manufacturing is who we are.

Manufacturing makes the Great Lakes home to the world’s fourth largest economy, with a combined GDP of $4.7 trillion among the eight states and two provinces. Manufacturing with all its advantages is intrinsic and essential to our region’s success. We make things together.

Bi-National Collaboration

The Great Lakes Manufacturing Council works to promote, preserve and enhance manufacturing in the Great Lakes Region. We foster innovative partnerships, identify best practices, enhance resources and increase exposure to new ideas. Collaborating among council members, we will help manufacturers and their communities compete.

360° Center of Excellence sharing in $13.1 million grant

The 360° Center of Excellence, a Bemidji State University-led consortium which includes nine two-year colleges in Minnesota, will share in a $13.1 million Department of Labor grant awarded to Central Lakes College, Pine Technical College and St. Cloud Technical and Community College to strengthen and expand Minnesota’s ability to develop a highly skilled workforce for manufacturing-related careers.

Obama Administration Announces $20 Million for 10 Public-Private Partnerships to Support American Manufacturing

The Obama Administration announced on October 9, 2012 that 10 public-private partnerships across America will receive $20 million in total awards to help revitalize American manufacturing and encourage companies to invest in the United States.  The 10 partnersips were selected through the Advanced Manufacturing Jobs and Innivation Accelerator Challence, which is a competitive multi-agency grant process to support initiatives that strengthen advanced manufacturing at the local level.  To read the press release from the U.S.

Beyond the Border Progress: Preclearance Pilot near Buffalo, NY

The United States and Canada have agreed on a program allowing American personnel to inspect Buffalo-bound trucks in Fort Erie, Ontario as part of the Beyond the Border agreement announced last year by President Obama and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.  The pilot program calls for the Peace Bridge to serve as one of two experimental border crossings.  By helping to eliminate the bottleneck at the Peace Bridge, officials hope to expedite traffic and boost trade and tourism.

CME: Canada’s entry into TPP marks key milestone in Canadian trade policy

Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) welcomes Canada's entry into the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations, calling it a major step forward in strengthening Canada's competitive advantage in both North American and Asian-Pacific markets.

The announcement, made earlier today, rounds out the total number of countries included in the negotiations to 11. Mexico officially joined the talks yesterday.

Aéro Montréal and Ohio Aerospace Institute sign a strategic collaboration agreement

 A very significant development occurred last week at Aéro Montréal’s Global Supply Chain Summit:  Aéro Montréal and the Ohio Aerospace Institute signed a framework agreement allowing for the exchange of information concerning the two clusters' respective programs and initiatives.  The collaboration also includes the exchange of information about their respective members' needs, offers and capabilities. 

Great Lakes Manufacturing News and Views

Each week, the Great Lakes Manufacturing Council publishes a newsletter about the latest manufacturing news across the region. Board member viewpoints and updates can also be found here.

Not Your Father's Factory Floor
by Ed Wolking - October 26, 2012

Society of Manufacturing Engineers Releases Manufacturing Education Strategy to Solve Job Skills Gap

The Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME)put forth a national action plan:“Workforce Imperative: A Manufacturing Education Strategy,” at the 2012 International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) at Chicago’s McCormick Place. It calls for manufacturers, educators, professional organizations and government to coordinate and standardize efforts aimed at reversing the skills gap crisis, and preparing a skilled workforce for the high-tech manufacturing jobs of today and tomorrow.  

360° Center of Excellence receives $3 million NSF grant

Bemidji State University’s 360° Manufacturing and Applied Engineering Center of Excellence has been awarded a National Science Foundation Advanced Technological Education Regional Center Award for nearly $3 million over four years.

Minister of Finance Jim Flaherty to Keynote First Annual MIN Manufacturing Summit


The Manufacturing Innovation Network, along with sponsoring partners Cowan Insurance, Gowlings, KPMG and TD Bank, and community partners is pleased to announce its first annual MIN Manufacturing Summit. The half-day event, scheduled to take place on May 1, 2102 is expected to attract up to 1,000 leaders from Ontario's manufacturing sector. The Honourable Jim Flaherty, Minister of Finance will deliver the keynote address.

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