The Obama administration today announced a $26 million multi-agency “Advanced Manufacturing Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge” to foster innovation-fueled job creation through public-private partnerships. These coordinated investments will help catalyze and leverage private capital, build an entrepreneurial ecosystem and promote cluster-based development in regions across the United States. This is the third round of the Jobs Accelerator competition, which is being funded by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration as well as the National Institute of Standards and Technology, the U.S. Department of Energy, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration, the Small Business Administration and the National Science Foundation.
Advanced manufacturing is critical to the health of the national economy and provides essential goods and equipment directly to consumers as well as to a wide range of industries, including the energy production, agriculture, medical and computing industries, and the security and intelligence sectors. Manufacturing accounts for 70 percent of private sector research and development, and 60 percent of U.S. exports—including a record $1.2 trillion in goods exported in 2011.
Approximately 12 projects are expected to be chosen through a competitive interagency grant process. Applicants are encouraged to submit proposals that will help grow a region’s industry clusters by strengthening connections to regional economic development opportunities and advanced manufacturing assets, enhance a region’s capacity to create high-quality sustainable jobs, develop a skilled and diverse advanced manufacturing workforce, increase exports, encourage the development of small businesses and accelerate technological innovation.
The deadline for Advanced Manufacturing Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge applications is July 9, and guidelines for submissions are accessible at www.manufacturing.gov.