The National Manufacturing Debate is an annual event hosted by Cranfield University. The event brings together manufacturing professionals from a range of sectors to discuss and debate current challenges in the industry, and encourage networking and collaboration across the sector to enable continued and long-term growth.

The 2020 event will take place online and will address the topic of decarbonisation: opportunities for the manufacturing sector.

Whilst the world is slowly and cautiously emerging from a pandemic with the threat of subsequent peaks, the reality of climate change - the other big emergency of our time - is coming back into sharp focus. The roadmap to net zero is not going to be easy but, in the UK, public opinion during COVID-19 remains firmly in favour of the Government acting now to combat climate change. Whilst in recent years the UK has reduced its carbon emissions faster than the G7, business and industry still contribute a quarter of all green house gas emissions. Is it possible to 'build back better' after COVID-19 and realise the benefits heralded by the UK Government - including claims that the UK low carbon economy could grow by an estimated 11% per year between 2015 and 2030 - in its recently published Clean Growth Strategy?

Encouraged by the success of collaborative efforts during COVID-19, such as the Ventilator Challenge UK, most industry leaders are acutely aware that the concept of sustainability is firmly on everyone’s agenda, with climate change impacting global supply chains and quality of life. Enhanced resilience and agility can only qualify as 'building back better' if the UK manufacturing industry sector, along with government bodies and institutions, adopt the right decarbonisation practices, policies and support strategies.

At this year’s National Manufacturing Debate, notable keynote speakers from industry and academia will participate in a facilitated debate, giving the opportunity to connect the theme to the latest discourse on the UK’s net zero targets and explore the big questions: is British manufacturing ready to seize the net zero opportunities and is it really possible for decarbonisation to enhance the UK’s competitiveness?

With all the urgency placed on decarbonisation targets, manufacturing will continue to attract attention as the sector responsible for providing sustainable food, products, packaging and doing so with net zero CO2. Giving tangible and practical examples of manufacturing’s state of play with decarbonisation, including opportunities for new business revenue, is necessary so that an upbeat 'can do' approach to this important and complex issue can gain momentum, starting the debate with enthusiasm and hoping that manufacturing can play a leading role towards net zero and IPCC 1.5.


Free to join.

How to register

Please register for the National Manufacturing Debate 2020 using the link below.

Register now