• indirect, through formal agreement of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
  • Develop manufacturing and information technologies for ship design and production through the Maritime Systems Technology (MARITECH) program of the Department of Defense's Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA), in part by encouraging needed alliances among customers, suppliers, and technologists.
  • Eliminate unnecessary government regulations in such areas as procurement, standardization of international construction standards by the U.S. Coast Guard, and updated Office of Occupational Safety and Health Administration standards.
  • Finance foreign-flag as well as U.S.-flag sales through Title XI loan guarantees.
  • Provide executive-branch assistance with international marketing.

Scope and Objectives of this Study

In keeping with these developments, ARPA and the Office of Naval Research (ONR) asked that the National Research Council (NRC), through the Marine Board, conduct a study of the potential role of technology in revitalizing the U.S. shipbuilding industry and of the health of the shipbuilding industry's infrastructure for research, education, and training.

The Marine Board's Committee on National Needs in Maritime Technology was formed and was given the following three-part charge:

  • Assess the current state of research and technology application in the U.S. shipbuilding industry and identify changes that could assist in making the transition from the current state of the industry to an internationally competitive state and convene a workshop to assist in this part of the project.
  • Assess current and proposed programs that invest in ship design and production-related research and identify appropriate changes that would improve their effectiveness and contribution to the goal of an internationally competitive U.S. shipbuilding industry.
  • Assess the current state of U.S. education in naval architecture and marine engineering and identify steps that should be taken to strengthen the education base to achieve national shipbuilding goals. If appropriate, convene a workshop to assist in this part of the project.

This report addresses these three tasks in the manner described at the end of this chapter under "Organization of the Report." First, however, some additional background is given on the shipbuilding industry's structure and employment, on potential commercial markets for large U.S. shipbuilders, on past and present forms of support for the U.S. shipbuilding industry, on foreign government support of their shipbuilding industries, and on the recently signed OECD agreement



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