In the last 10 years, there has been a dramatic reduction in manufacturing jobs in the U.S. due to a combination of factors, such as the economic crisis and foreign competition. But manufacturing jobs can return to the U.S., and a key component of that return involves innovation to facilitate product variety.
Companies that manufacture products abroad typically do not offer significant product variety, as the support costs — like inventory, markdowns and returns — are too high. It’s more economical to produce a narrow product line when you’re shipping to warehouses from across an ocean. Read More »
The Boeing 787 Dreamliner is a huge innovation. The first new aircraft launched in more than a decade, Boeing uses incredibly advanced manufacturing technology to build a lighter-weight carbon composite plane for improved fuel-efficiency. In addition, the planes include a number of state-of-the-art design features to increase passenger comfort on long-haul flights. Read More »
When a person decides to donate a kidney, expecting nothing in return, clearly one person’s life could be saved. But this single act of altruism actually can save dozens of lives. For this to happen, though, kidney exchange programs need to take considerable care in deciding how to allocate the kidney of the altruistic donor and how to structure subsequent transplants.
Kidney exchanges were established in the past decade to solve a problem affecting thousands of people with kidney disease:
They have a loved one willing to donate a kidney, but the two have incompatible blood or tissue types. Organized in a clearinghouse or exchange, however, incompatible pairs can trade with each other, forming cycles in which each patient needing a kidney receives one from the donor of a different pair. Cycles have to be short—usually two or three pairs—because the transplants must be done simultaneously so each pair donating a kidney knows for certain it will receive one in return.
MIT Sloan Assoc. Prof. David Gamarnik
But if a donor comes forward who is not part of a pair, the potential for more life saving transplants arises. Because each pair can receive a kidney before donating one, the transplants do not have to be done simultaneously. What is the best way to use the kidney of an altruistic donor so that the greatest number of patients get transplants? Read More »
It’s no secret that the labor market is tough these days. But the issue isn’t just the number of people who are unemployed. It’s also income inequality and the low pay of retail employees that’s concerning. Retail employees represent close to 20% of the U.S. workforce.
In retail, conventional wisdom holds that if you want to offer the best prices then you can’t afford to invest in your employees. Typical retail workers receive minimal training, irregular hours, and no benefits for part-timers. Turnover is high with understaffing common.
Wages are so low that retail workers tend to rely more on public assistance than workers in other industries. If companies actually invested in their employees by offering better jobs, many of these people could move into the middle class, which is critical in our economy.
A majority of companies are now using huge streams of data and sophisticated analytic tools to transform how they strategize, operate, and engage with customers. According to a new global study by MIT Sloan Management Review (MIT SMR), 58% of organizations now apply analytics to create a competitive advantage within their markets or industries, up from 37% just one year ago.
Yet there is a growing gap between the most sophisticated users of data and analytics, and those just getting onto the path towards analytics competency.
MIT SMR’s initial joint study in 2010 identified three progressive levels of analytical sophistication: Aspirational, Experienced and Transformed. When we compared this year’s results to last year’s, we found that Experienced and Transformed organizations are expanding their capabilities and raising their expectations of what analytics can do, while the Aspirational organizations are falling behind. Read More »