The shipbuilding industry is approaching a historic crossroads. The demand for new and more capable ships is surging while a wave of retirements and operational obsolescence will place enormous challenges on shipbuilders around the world. However, recent performance setbacks in the form of protracted delays in delivery of new ships that were over budget and not compliant with essential requirements clearly confirmed that the industry must do better. At the same time, increased fleet operations are placing significant pressure on fleet maintenance budgets to achieve expected fleet availability metrics within the bounds of available resources. The challenges that these conditions are placing on the shipbuilding industry prompted a group of industry and government leaders in the USA to have the first Global Shipbuilding Executive Summit in 2010 that was jointly sponsored by the American Society of Naval Engineers and Siemens PLM Software. Based on the view that Public Private Partnerships are best suited to deal with such broad systematic issues, a group of like-minded leaders came together to focus on solutions to the top shipbuilding industries challenges. The summit began with introductory comments by prominent shipbuilding leaders from both the USA and Europe. The European perspective was a very important and challenging viewpoint on how leading shipyards are addressing similar challenges and moreover competing in the export market for high performance vessels. Then close to 100 executives spent several hours developing a set of specific recommendations to improve industry performance and productivity.

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