Contact: Cecilia Warrol Ersson
For most engineering companies, production is a vital part of the value-added process. The notion of production is, however, not uncontroversial: Is production really something for Sweden? Can we compete with low-cost countries? Is it important to have production in Sweden?
To shed light on these and similar questions Teknikföretagen, IF Metall, IVA, the Knowledge Foundation and VINNOVA initiated the broad study “Produktion för konkurrenskraft” (Production for competitiveness).
The study showed that there was a wide-spread ignorance of how important production is, a conclusion which led the stake-holders to initiate a number of follow-up projects. One example is the Teknikföretagen three-year tour across the country to discuss the conditions for production in Sweden with local politicians and businesses.
Another project, “Produktionslyftet”, aims at enlarging the production know-how in SMEs. Through training and practical advice companies are able to develop their business by focusing on lean production.
In addition to this, vocational training is being upgraded through so called Teknikcollege based on the industry and technology programmes.
Furthermore, we believe that university and institute research should increasingly focus on areas of importance to the engineering industry. The respective responsibilities of universities and industry research institutes need to be clarified and the latter, primarily the IVF, should be given a more defined role. This is why Teknikföretagen’s Produktionsforum is dedicated to creating a strategy for production research in Sweden. A strategy that will also generate a better link with the extensive research programmes developed at EU level.