2014-03-18T205111Z_1_CBREA2H1LXE00_RTROPTP_2_USA-OBAMA-MANUFACTURING

Obama manufacturing hubs face uphill struggle to create jobs

3D printers of all shapes and sizes fill the studios at America Makes, the National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute in Youngstown, OhioBy Julia Edwards and Jason Lange YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Along the banks of the Mahoning River in the struggling Ohio steel town of Youngstown sits a once-abandoned furniture warehouse that has been converted into a sleek new laboratory. The lab, called America Makes, is the first in a series of so-called “manufacturing innovation hubs” that President Barack Obama has launched with the promise that they could revitalize America’s industrial sector and spur jobs growth in downtrodden communities like Youngstown. Seven more hubs are planned by the end of the year, including projects in Chicago, Detroit and Raleigh, North Carolina, that will follow the Youngstown model of bringing together businesses, non-profits and universities to pursue technological breakthroughs. But after more than a year of operation, the Youngstown hub underscores the challenges facing Obama’s goal of ensuring “a steady stream of good jobs into the 21st century,” as he put it in remarks at a White House event last month.

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