Twelve manufacturing communities around the globe stand out from the rest. They are, simply, the best at developing, making, marketing, moving, and managing products. Business thrives in Barcelona because Catalonia's capital boasts a striking diversity of industry, from the heaviest and lowest tech to the lightest and highest tech. In Houston, an impressive transportation network ties together engineering talent, machining expertise, petrochemical complexes, and an abundance of technically skilled workers. With companies whose products range from chocolates and coffee to machine tools and textiles, the Milan/Turin metro area is much more than Europe's automaker. Osaka, home to 38,000 Japanese companies and host to 250 foreign firms, has a storied industrial tradition and a cutting-edge openness to new ideas. Timber town turned high-tech hub, Oregon's Portland employs some of America's most productive workers in a place distinguished by green space and a manageable pace. Manufacturing has found the way to San Jose, a community that hums 24/7, churning out products, processes, and new companies. Metro So Paulo is 39 municipalities, more than 17 million people, and the industrial heart of South America. In Seoul, the chaebol, South Korea's famed and still-powerful family-run conglomerates, are meeting the dot.coms. Result: a community of innovative alliances and high-tech production. In Shanghai, Zhu Rongji, once the city's mayor and now China's premier, built Pudong, a district of skyscrapers and new production sites, and the industrialists have come. Tiny Singapore offers manufacturers big advantages: strategic location, excellent infrastructure, educated workforce, Internet-savvy society, and superior banking system. Although much of the brawn may be gone from the central city, Tokyo remains the brains of Japanese manufacturing. It's where top executives make critical, strategic decisions. As a manufacturing community, the whole of Toronto is far greater than the sum of its parts, a credit to the desire of businesses, governments, schools, and people of different cultures to work together.
About the Author

John McClenahen | Former Senior Editor, IndustryWeek

 John S. McClenahen, is an occasional essayist on the Web site of IndustryWeek, the executive management publication from which he retired in 2006. He began his journalism career as a broadcast journalist at Westinghouse Broadcasting’s KYW in Cleveland, Ohio. In May 1967, he joined Penton Media Inc. in Cleveland and in September 1967 was transferred to Washington, DC, the base from which for nearly 40 years he wrote primarily about national and international economics and politics, and corporate social responsibility.
      McClenahen, a native of Ohio now residing in Maryland, is an award-winning writer and photographer. He is the author of three books of poetry, most recently An Unexpected Poet (2013), and several books of photographs, including Black, White, and Shades of Grey (2014). He also is the author of a children’s book, Henry at His Beach (2014).
      His photograph “Provincetown: Fog Rising 2004” was selected for the Smithsonian Institution’s 2011 juried exhibition Artists at Work and displayed in the S. Dillon Ripley Center at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., from June until October 2011. Five of his photographs are in the collection of St. Lawrence University and displayed on campus in Canton, New York.
      John McClenahen’s essay “Incorporating America: Whitman in Context” was designated one of the five best works published in The Journal of Graduate Liberal Studies during the twelve-year editorship of R. Barry Leavis of Rollins College. John McClenahen’s several journalism prizes include the coveted Jesse H. Neal Award. He also is the author of the commemorative poem “Upon 50 Years,” celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of Wolfson College Cambridge, and appearing in “The Wolfson Review.”
      John McClenahen received a B.A. (English with a minor in government) from St. Lawrence University, an M.A., (English) from Western Reserve University, and a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies from Georgetown University, where he also pursued doctoral studies. At St. Lawrence University, he was elected to academic honor societies in English and government and to Omicron Delta Kappa, the University’s highest undergraduate honor. John McClenahen was a participant in the 32nd Annual Wharton Seminars for Journalists at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. During the Easter Term of the 1986 academic year, John McClenahen was the first American to hold a prestigious Press Fellowship at Wolfson College, Cambridge, in the United Kingdom.
      John McClenahen has served on the Editorial Board of Confluence: The Journal of Graduate Liberal Studies and was co-founder and first editor of Liberal Studies at Georgetown. He has been a volunteer researcher on the William Steinway Diary Project at the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., and has been an assistant professorial lecturer at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C.


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