Many observers have written off U.S. manufacturing, and manufacturing in California in particular. High costs and offshoring are frequently blamed, and in the last election international trade agreements were added to the list. But is manufacturing really in decline, are trade agreements a major factor, and what does the future of the sector look like in California? Technology, demographics and global competition will continue to drive change, but if California plays its cards right manufacturing can remain a prominent part of the state’s economy.
Sean Randolph is Senior Director of the Bay Area Council Economic Institute, where he served as President & CEO from 1998-2015. Dr. Randolph previously served as director of international trade for the State of California (1994-98), where he directed international programs to stimulate exports and introduce California companies to overseas markets. Before service with the state, he was Managing Director of the RSR Pacific Group, an international business consulting firm specializing in Asia and Latin America, and before that served as International Director General of the Pacific Basin Economic Council (1988-1993), a 15-nation international organization of leading U.S., Asian and Latin American corporations active in Asia-Pacific trade and investment. His professional career includes extensive experience in the U.S. Government, on the U.S. Congress staff (1976-1980), and White House staff (1980-1981). From 1981–85 he served in the Department of State: on the Policy Planning Staff, as Special Adviser for Policy in the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, and as Deputy/Ambassador-at Large for Pacific Basin affairs. From 1985–88 he served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Energy for International Affairs, managing nuclear proliferation, research, and global oil and gas issues. Dr. Randolph holds a JD from the Georgetown University Law Center, a Ph.D. from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy (Tufts and Harvard Universities), a B.S.F.S. from Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service, and studied at the London School of Economics.
4:15pm: Doors open
4:30pm-5:30pm: Talk and Discussion