NMW gets new home, bigger conference for 2006

National Manufacturing WeekDON'T COUNT National Manufacturing Week (NMW) out just yet. Sure, the venerable, multi-show event has shrunk due to the Internet’s emergence, possible over-diversification, and the growth of niche-based tradeshows and corporate preach-to-the-choir events.

However, organizers say they’ve signed up more than 1,000 exhibitors for this year, staged 12 industry-specific pavilions, put together an aggressive 250-session conference, and scheduled seven free keynote presentations.

NMW 2006 will offer its usual four-show format on March 20-23 at the 840,000-ft² Donald E. Stevens Convention Center in Rosemont, IL, just outside of Chicago and next to O’Hare International Airport. The four main shows are Design Engineering, Industrial Automation, Plant Engineering and Enterprise IT.

The conference will be held:

  • 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on March 20-21
  • 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on March 22
  • 9 a.m. to 12 noon on March 23

The show floor will be open:

  • 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on March 21-22
  • 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on March 23

Organizers add that NMW’s expanded conference will focus on the needs of small and mid-sized manufacturers. The conference will contain five tracks, 23 sub-tracks, and feature more than 400 speakers. The eight keynotes will include:

  • Jack Perkowski, ASIMCO’s chairman and CEO, who will present “China: Opportunities and Challenges.” Perkowski was featured in the recent best-seller, The World is Flat, by New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman
  • Jim Owens, Caterpillar’s chairman and CEO, will present “Manufacturing Leadership in the Global Marketplace"
  • Colin Wu, China Business Sources’ president, will present “What’s Behind Chinese Competitiveness?
  • Doug Engel, Deloitte and Touche USA’s vice chairman, and Tommy Thompson, Deloitte Center for Health Solutions’ chairman, will deliver “Managing Structural Costs and Maintaining Competitive Edge: Improving Your Position in the Global Marketplace”
  • Gilles Bouchard, Hewlett Parkard’s global operations EVP, will deliver “Customer Choice: Managing Multiple Routes-to-Market on a Global Scale”
  • Mike Santori, National Instruments’ automation fellow, will present “How to Compete in a Global Economy”
  • Mary Frances Cox, Schneider Electric’s senior operations VP for North America, will present “Achieving significant reductions in manufacturing cost base”

National Manufacturing WeekPavillion Place
This year’s 12 pavilions will include:

  • ARC Flash on properly protecting employees and preventing Arc flashes
  • CAD/CAM on mechanical design and using next-generation systems
  • Cleaning Technologies on parts cleaning in industrial and precision industries
  • Contract Manufacturing on how to use outside contractors
  • Material Handling featuring storage-and-retrieval, shipping, tracking and handling systems
  • Microsoft Partners with compatible manufacturing applications from independent software and service providers
  • Microsystems with products, tools and suppliers for miniaturization projects
  • Motion Technology featuring advances in power transmission, electromechanical, hydraulic and pneumatic components and control systems
  • Reliability with maintenance and reliability equipment, software and services
  • Safety/Health/Environmental with products, services and technologies to keep employees safe and healthy
  • Sensors featuring industrial sensors and intelligent systems for manufacturing processes
  • SolidWorks Partners with products and solutions from SolidWorks and its partners

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