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Category: Manufacturing

Korean Industrial Policy: From the Arrest of the Millionaires to Hallyu

Within days after he seized power in the 1961 military coup d’état in South Korea, Major General Park Chung-hee ordered the arrest of fifty-one of the country’s leading businessmen. The head of Samsung, the largest chaebol (family-owned conglomerate), who had been travelling in Japan, was immediately placed under house arrest when he returned to Korea.…

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Common Good Capitalism: An Interview with Marco Rubio

We have always had a political class, composed of politicians, donors, consultants, and media who make decisions about what our politics and campaigns should focus on. But never have the views of this political class and the rest of the country been so different. For our political class, the operating assumption has been that popular concerns, like families’ cost of living and industries moving to China, are issues that are either simply inevitable in modern society or can be dealt with by a tax credit or a government program. I think one of the lessons of the 2016 election is that these are more fundamental issues that demand deeper political attention…

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Ending the Interregnum: A Way through the Culture War

Politics is fundamentally agonistic. Not all interests and desires can be harmonized. Periods of cultural and economic hegemony sup­plant one another through material and ideational conflict. Within these periods there are winners and losers. Competing political parties quibble at the margins, but it is rare that an election gives rise to more than superficial change.…

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Will Shifting Party Coalitions Change Policy Priorities?

America’s two major political parties appear to be in the process of swapping their historic coalition constituents. With that shift, many of our assumptions about what it means to be a Democrat or a Republican are coming apart at the seams. The most significant development seen in recent polling data is the exodus of college-educated…

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Rebuilding British Industry: A Plan for the Post-Brexit Economy

Today Britain finds itself in an odd position. In the wake of the vote to leave the European Union and its aftermath, the Conservative Party has been given a new mandate. A substantial portion of the voting public wants a more independent Britain to pursue national restoration and regeneration. On an emotional level, most of…

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Disruptive Innovation in America and China

The concept of disruptive innovation arose from the study of innovation in companies, but it can also be applied to nations. In this essay I will use some of the concepts of disruptive innovation to analyze the dynamics of national innovation and growth in America and China.1 The United States is supposed to be the…

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America Needs an Industrial Policy

The phrase “industrial policy” conjures up images of Europe’s dirigiste failures, corruption in African and Latin American econ­omies, and the disastrous 1984 presidential campaign of Walter Mon­dale. In board rooms and think tanks and even university class rooms across the country, the term generates an instinctive revulsion hard­wired by decades of listening to laissez-faire and…

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Reinventing Competitiveness

To many, especially in Washington, these are halcyon days for America’s economy. The stock market is at record highs and recent GDP growth has been robust. But look deeper. There’s evi­dence that the structural foundations of America’s economy may be shakier than at any time in recent memory. While the headline statis­tics look sanguine, we…

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National Developmentalism: From Forgotten Tradition to New Consensus

In response to the rise of “populism,” members of the Washington establishment have adopted a reassuring way to frame the ques­tion of America’s proper relationship to the world. As they see it, Americans are divided into two camps—open or closed, globalist or nationalist, interventionist or protectionist. In this framing, the closed, nationalist, and protectionist camp…

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Financing Advanced Manufacturing: Why VCs Aren’t the Answer

In 2013, a group of MIT researchers published a study examining the business trajectory of 150 start-up firms that grew out of technology developed at the university. These were production-related “hardware” firms that actually manufactured things. The firms were able to attract early stage venture capital (VC) funding. They were also able to find the…

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