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SEMI, the industry association representing the global electronics design and manufacturing supply chain, released the results of a survey of more than 400 U.S. member companies that highlight challenges facing the semiconductor industry. The survey results also offer insights into SEMI member perspectives on enhancing U.S. competitiveness through targeted public and private investments aimed at developing the industry’s manufacturing capacity, infrastructure and workforce. SEMI conducted the survey in partnership with MITRE Engenuity, the technology foundation for public good launched by MITRE two years ago.
“SEMI member insights from the survey are important guideposts for government investments to strengthen the U.S. microelectronics industry and ensure supply chain security,” said Melissa Grupen-Shemansky, CTO of SEMI. “Strategic investments in the domestic microelectronics industry are a significant opportunity for the U.S. to bolster its economy and better compete with other regions that incentivize their industrial development.”
Following are three primary takeaways from the survey:
Invest in the Entire Semiconductor Ecosystem: The U.S. needs to invest in a broad range of next-generation semiconductor technologies to help fuel innovation in areas including materials, equipment, packaging, security, machine learning, and advanced CMOS. Investments would help the U.S. retain leadership in several segments and regain the top position in others vital to national security. Opportunities for research and development span the entire semiconductor supply chain.
Public and Private Funding is Key: A combination of government and industry funding is key to strengthening domestic chip manufacturing and commercialization. Access to technical talent and research and development facilities is also vital.
Invest in Multi-Generational Workforce Initiatives: The U.S. semiconductor industry faces a dire shortage of talent for critical manufacturing and technical roles. Investments in K-12 STEM education, higher education, apprenticeships and vocational training must be made to alleviate workforce shortages.
“MITRE Engenuity is thrilled to partner with SEMI on the industry survey,” said Laurie Giandomenico, Chief Acceleration Officer for MITRE and MITRE Engenuity’s founder. “Our partnership is an example of a collaborative effort that will catalyze the industry to come together. We believe this is essential for national security as well as a healthy, global, semiconductor industry. The National Semiconductor Technology Center (NSTC) provides an opportunity to shape and revitalize the semiconductor ecosystem in the United States. Together we will tackle the complex challenges facing an industry that is foundational to the technologies that we work on with our government sponsors and industry partners. Our goal is to help ensure American innovation truly leads to American growth and create generational impact.”
Survey Respondents Overview
- More than two-thirds of the respondents (~270) represented the materials, components, equipment, and device-maker markets.
- Respondents included assembly and test as well as design automation companies.
- Although all participants were based in the U.S., 25% represent companies headquartered abroad.
- Over half of the survey respondents were C-suite level or hold executive leadership roles (e.g., VP, General Manager, Director).
- Nearly a quarter of the respondents were engineers, scientists, and technical staff.
- More than 50 respondents hold business development and strategic partnership roles.