9320951 Schmoyer The purpose of this forum is to develop further a vision of agile manufacturing, to assess the current state of implementation, to identify and prioritize needed changes in practices and related technology, and to influence the research agenda on agile manufacturing. The forum will carry out strategic analyses of the technical and business issues affecting agile manufacturing. It will serve as an industry voice in defining and prioritizing research needs in support of agile manufacturing. The forum will provide recommendations as requested on the entire Agile Manufacturing Initiative (AMI) including the Agile Manufacturing Research Institutes and related demonstration projects. The forum will evaluate industry training needs in agile manufacturing against available courses and materials. This forum plays a central role in the success of the AMI which provides an industry-led institute. The forum will work as a catalyst to assist in the dissemination and adoption of the agile manufacturing research results. Rapid deployment of this research is seen as an important manufacturing strategy for the country. Enterprises which adopt agile manufacturing concepts are expected to change a broad range of operating characteristics quickly. This will enable them to take advantage of new manufacturing technologies, and to facilitate timely response to unanticipated market opportunities.