The Manufacturing Leadership Council (MLC), the world’s foremost executive leadership organization dedicated to driving transformational growth for the world’s manufacturing companies, announces its 2017 to 2018 Critical Issues roadmap to Manufacturing 4.0.

The Council’s 800 members have identified the most urgent and important Critical Issues disrupting the manufacturing industry over the next twelve months as it pursues a more efficient, agile, and data-driven future.

The Council’s new agenda has a sharper focus on harnessing the power of digital Manufacturing 4.0 technologies and advanced analytics to boost efficiency and flexibility; highlights the rising importance of enterprise-wide collaboration and disruptive innovation for competitive gain, and stresses the need for new leadership skills and digitally-savvy workforce cultures to increase the effectiveness and speed of transformational initiatives.

The Council’s 2017/2018 Critical Issues agenda includes:

  • Factories of the Future
  • The Collaborative Manufacturing Enterprise
  • Manufacturing Enterprise Innovation
  • Transformative Technologies in Manufacturing
  • Next-Generation Manufacturing Leadership & the Changing Workforce
  • Manufacturing 4.0 Sustainability
  • Cybersecurity in Manufacturing

 “The Council’s new Critical Issues agenda focuses on the technological, organizational, and leadership changes that manufacturers must orchestrate for a successful journey to Manufacturing 4.0,” said David R. Brousell, Co-founder of the Manufacturing Leadership Council. “All across the globe, from country to country, M4.0 initiatives and programs are underway, reshaping the competitive environment and raising the stakes for all companies. The challenges before manufacturing leaders are indeed great, but the rewards of success with Manufacturing 4.0 are even greater.”

Based on extensive consultation, exclusive research, and key front-line insights from senior-level Council members across multiple industry sectors, the MLC’s new Critical Issues agenda is designed to help manufacturers of all sizes align their leadership strategies and business models for a successful journey to the digital industrial age.

Full descriptions of the Council’s 2017/2018 Critical Issues agenda are available on and in the August issue of the Manufacturing Leadership Journal on