WEDC releases Wisconsin Economic Future Study

The Wisconsin Economic Future Study, released today by the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), says manufacturing continues to be the economic driver industry of Wisconsin. The study encourages the state to develop strategies that further strengthen driver industries.

“We need to reinvest in productivity, workforce development and technology,” said Lee Swindall, vice president of business and industry development for WEDC. “There are many important sectors in Wisconsin, but the study showed that the manufacturing sector has the highest industry concentrations across the state and has had some of the highest growth over the last decade.” 

The Economic Future Study, commissioned by WEDC, Wisconsin Manufacturing Extension Partnership (WMEP) and Milwaukee 7, was conducted by the Manufacturing Performance Institute (MPI). MPI and the Department of Commerce, the agency the WEDC replaced in 2011, released the first study in 2005 to identify key manufacturing industries that drive economic growth. This updated study analyzed all Wisconsin industries and compared Wisconsin’s economic competitiveness in 2011 to the results in the in 2005 study.

“Understanding the industries that “drive” the Wisconsin economy and how to better support those industries can help to improve the state’s economic performance,” said John Brandt, the study’s author with MPI. “The future study provides detailed information on how these industries compete, identifying both opportunities and challenges.” 

In the coming weeks, WEDC will be presenting the economic driver data to regional economic development organizations, and will be working with them to direct the development of investment strategies in the key economic drivers.

The study examined export, innovation, and workforce performances of Wisconsin’s driver industries compared to competitive states and the United States, and reviewed the state’s business climate.

A detailed analysis of the study will be included in the July 8 Mid-Year Economic Forecast in BizTimes Milwaukee magazine. 

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