Manager of Corporate Research
Michigan Economic Development Corporation
With the sharp downturn in the state’s automobile manufacturing sector, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) is putting its efforts into transitioning displaced workers into high-growth industries. One of the focuses for Dave Morris, manager of corporate research at MEDC, is alternative energy. With EMSI’s analysis tool, Morris compared the knowledge, skills, and abilities of auto workers and discovered parallels to two booming sectors—wind turbine and solar panel manufacturing. “In Michigan, it’s not so much that we have a lot of sunshine,” Morris explained. “We have a very advanced manufacturing base.” There are already two sizable solar panel manufacturers located in Michigan. By employing a data-driven strategy, MEDC hopes to lure more alternative energy firms to the state by showing that there’s a large batch of available skilled workers.