An Interview of Jim Davis, by CMTC, on the History of Smart Manufacturing

This episode features Dr. Jim Davis, Vice Provost of IT at the Office of Advanced Research Computing at UCLA. Jim defines smart manufacturing, explains how it’s evolved over the past two decades, and provides some unique examples of how smart manufacturing is being used today.

Jim Davis is Vice Provost of IT at the Office of Advanced Research Computing (OARC) with broad responsibilities for data and technology solutions in support of UCLA’s research mission and its broadly defined communities engaged in campus, local, state, national, and global impacts of digital research and scholarship. Jim co-founded the Smart Manufacturing Leadership Coalition (SMLC) and spearheaded UCLA’s leadership role in forming Department of Energy’s (DOE) Clean Energy Smart Manufacturing Innovation Institute (CESMII), a Manufacturing USA Institute. CESMII’s program and administrative home is with UCLA and through Jim’s Office of Advanced Research Computing. Jim led the Institute’s first business and technology roadmap and is currently involved with CESMII’s Smart Manufacturing Innovation Platform infrastructure and its use for data and modeling applications in manufacturing operations and supply chains.

Listen to the full Interview


00:00:00 – Introductions

00:01:25 – Definition of Smart Manufacturing

00:06:36 – The technology’s breadth of applicability

00:07:12 – Examples of improvements from adopting technology

00:15:11 – Discussion about ROI

00:22:29 – Smart manufacturing tools that bridge the gap between IT and OT

00:23:42 – Adoption and barriers

00:29:20 – How Smart Manufacturing has developed over the past 10 years

00:31:29 – Security considerations

00:33:41 – Projections for wider use and ease of implementation

00:37:37 – Key cultural elements and technical capabilities needed for ROI

00:40:20 – Next evolution of technology and trends

00:43:36 – Company preparation

00:46:50 – Summary

Listen to the full Interview