SOUTHFIELD — The Engineering Society of Detroit Thursday introduced a multi-step process to boost the number of badly needed, scarce high-tech workers in southeast Michigan — and give them more jobs to work in.

Starting with its Future City competition for middle schoolers through job fairs and job banks for college students and recent grads, through conferences and training courses for current engineers, through changes in state law designed to create virtual mini-nations with the power to write their own labor and insurance law, the ESD says its “Made In Michigan Pipeline” will produce more professionals, more jobs and more investment.

“Our pipeline integrates short and long-term initiatives, all geared to transform our workforce to be the most competitive in the world while promoting lifelong learning and optimizing quality of life,” ESD’s report said. “What is unique is that all of these pieces are part of an integrated whole working in concert for the betterment of all. ESD’s ‘Made in Michigan’ Pipeline is all about people — the young student, blue-collar worker, engineering or technical professional, unemployed, disadvantaged, entrepreneur, sales representative or company executive.”

The ESD’s Institute also has a role in the program. It doesn’t hold conferences; it proposes change through neutral, grassroots, consensus-based symposia that deliver results through the work of more than 1,000 participants. Their bottom line is available at

Modeled on the process of the National Academy of Sciences, The ESD Institute brings diverse stakeholders together to find the answers we need today for a sustainable tomorrow.

ESDI has already proposed a Michigan Green Enterprise Zone with 30 percent lower business costs and submittted a Blue Economy Report championed the use of Michgian’s water resources. There’s also a Clean Energy Initiative to build the next generation of energy products in Michigan.

ESD is also proposing a statewide education program for science, technology, engineering and mathematics, built on partnerships with ESD engineers and supported by employers.

ESD also called on state passage of a law it calls the Michigan Investment Corporation Act that would create what are essentially independent mini-nations within the state, free to operate outside existing state law, including labor and worker’s compensation laws. That law would also allow creation of a new health care coverage system from scratch.

ESD officials say they’ve vetted the proposals with legal experts, business and labor groups, and intend to seek out champions to press the proposals with state legislators — election year or no.

More at

Listen to a 10 minute interview with the ESD Intstitute’s director, Chris Webb, at the link below.


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