In a bid to become the UK’s hub for high-value manufacturing, Leeds City Region is hosting ‘The Future of Manufacturing’ event on 19th November 2014, as part of a programme of work to drive economic growth across the manufacturing sector to bring together leaders from the private sector to help shape the future of manufacturing in the region and the UK. With the greatest concentration of high-value manufacturers in the UK and renowned for its scale, diversity and excellence, Leeds City Region is well placed to advise and shape the rapidly changing manufacturing environment.

The event, organised by Leeds and Partners, has confirmed two keynote speakers, Sir Mike Gregory, head of the Institute for Manufacturing, University of Cambridge and Rick Mattoon, senior economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, who are set to identify and discuss the opportunities associated with high value manufacturing in Leeds City Region.

Sir Mike Gregory and Rick Mattoon will join Professor John Fisher, deputy vice chancellor at the University of Leeds, Merlin Goldman, lead technologist in high value manufacturing at Innovate UK, Richard Higgins and UK Head of Advanced Engineering and Manufacturing for UKTI on the panel to discuss the profound change across the manufacturing sector and how businesses in the City Region must seize the opportunities and overcome the challenges associated with this new era of manufacturing.

As a senior economist within the economic research department at the Federal Reserve Bank, as well as previous work as an economic policy advisor, with a primary focus upon the regional mid-west economy of the USA, Rick Mattoon will bring to the forefront the opportunities for our high-value manufacturing companies to connect with those in the USA, as well as the potential economic benefits within the new sources of revenue in the sector.

Rick Mattoon commented: “The new era of manufacturing is seeing the sector advance and diversify, which has the potential to create further sources of revenue for manufacturing companies, as long as these opportunities are captured and exploited. Historically, in the Midwest, our economy has also been supported by our high-value manufacturing successes, so many of the same principles to further encourage growth can be applied to the businesses located in Leeds City Region.”

With close links to the manufacturing industry, as well as a senior advisor to government, Sir Mike Gregory has published works in the areas of manufacturing strategy, technology management, international manufacturing and manufacturing policy. As the Chair for the UK Manufacturing Professors Forum, and member of the of the UK Government’s Manufacturing Analytical Group, Sir Mike Gregory is passionate about ensuring the success and long-term future of high-value manufacturing in the UK.

The Future of Manufacturing event will enable and encourage high value manufacturers in the City Region to discover how these exciting changes may affect their business, discuss future needs with key local, national and international stakeholders and decision makers and help develop the City Region’s proposition for manufacturing, as well as exploring the potential for collaborative working with manufacturing companies in the USA.

Joining Sir Mike Gregory and Rick Mattoon on the panel will be Professor John Fisher, deputy vice chancellor at the University of Leeds, Merlin Goldman, Lead Technologist in High Value Manufacturing at Innovate UK, Richard Higgins and UK head of advanced engineering and manufacturing for UKTI, as well as representation from Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership and the Manufacturing Technologies Association.

Leeds City Region has the highest concentration of manufacturing in the UK, with the most extensive value network of support and innovation infrastructure in the North. The ‘Future of Manufacturing’ event will see an audience of senior executives, cherry-picked from Leeds City Region’s wealth of high value manufacturing debate the future of the sector with the panel’s line up of key speakers.