BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Indiana University’s Manufacturing Policy Initiative has announced its inaugural class of fellows, two renowned practitioners who bring decades worth of experience and insight into the current landscape of American manufacturing policy.Gilbert Kaplan, most recently the Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade in the United States Department of Commerce, and Michael Mandel, chief economic strategist at the Progressive Policy Institute, will serve as fellows for one year. Each will contribute to two issues of Insight into Manufacturing Policy, consult or co-author working papers with faculty from the O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs, and participate in a major conference in April.
Kaplan and Mandel will provide and communicate insights to advance the mission of MPI, which is housed in the O’Neill School. They integrate practical experience with knowledge drawn from the spectrum of disciplines in economics, law, the physical and natural sciences, and public policy.
“Issues affecting the competitiveness of manufacturing dominate today’s headlines,” said MPI Director Keith Belton. “The Manufacturing Policy Institute was created to inform public debate on these issues, and our fellows will bring fresh perspectives on them from leading thinkers and policy practitioners.”
The MPI is focused on U.S. public policies impacting the competitiveness of the manufacturing sector. It serves as a source of objective, state-of-the-art information for policy makers, manufacturers, and policy analysts. The research, outreach, and educational activities of MPI cover the intersection of technology, business, and public policy.
The 2020 Inaugural Class of MPI Fellows
MPI Senior Fellow Gilbert B. Kaplan recently served as Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade in the United States Department of Commerce. In that role, he oversaw a workforce of 2,100 personnel within the International Trade Administration (ITA). This included three major units at ITA: Global Markets and the Domestic and Foreign Commercial Service, Industry and Analysis, and Enforcement and Compliance.
Prior to assuming his Commerce position, Kaplan was a partner at King & Spalding and part of the International Trade Practice Group. He represented U.S. companies and workers in a wide range of cases on antidumping (price discrimination), countervailing duties (subsidies), and Section 337 (intellectual property infringement). He also advised clients on trade policy issues and trade negotiations. Kaplan filed and prosecuted the first successful countervailing duty (anti-subsidy) case ever against China in 2007.
From 1983 to 1988, Kaplan served in several senior positions in the U.S. government. He was the Acting Assistant Secretary and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Import Administration, at the U.S. Department of Commerce, in charge of administering over 500 U.S. antidumping and countervailing duty cases. At that time, he was a key negotiator of the U.S.-Japan Agreement on Trade in Semiconductors.
Kaplan graduated from Harvard Law School, cum laude, and Harvard College, magna cum laude.
MPI Fellow Dr. Michael Mandel is chief economic strategist at the Progressive Policy Institute in Washington, D.C. and senior fellow at the Mack Institute of Innovation Management at the Wharton School (University of Pennsylvania). He was chief economist at BusinessWeek prior to its purchase by Bloomberg in 2009.
In recent years Mandel has focused much of his research and policy work on digitization of manufacturing and other physical industries. His research shows that digitization in the physical sector has dramatically lagged, hurting productivity, job growth, and entrepreneurship. As a result, policy directed toward encouraging digitization of the factory floor and increasing use of manufacturing platforms can boost manufacturing output and jobs in the United States and help traditional industrial regions.
With experience spanning policy, academics, and business, Mandel has helped lead the public conversation about the economic and business impact of technology for the past two decades. He is the author of four books, including The High-Risk Society and Rational Exuberance: Silencing the Enemies of Growth and Why the Future Is Better Than You Think. His essentials-level economics textbook from McGraw-Hill, Economics: The Basics, is going into its fourth edition. Mandel received a Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University and taught at New York University’s Stern School of Business.
The Paul H. O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University thanks Grant Thornton for its support of the 2020 Fellows Program.