President Barack Obama announced a $70 million federal award to a nonprofit co-founded by UCLA to create a nationwide Smart Manufacturing Innovation Institute, with the goal of improving the efficiency of advanced manufacturing.

UCLA Vice Provost of Information Technology James F. Davis will remain at the university while serving as the interim executive director of the institute, and UCLA will lead the California regional center with partners such as the California Manufacturing Technology Consultants, UC Berkeley and UC Irvine.

The institute includes more than 200 partners from the Smart Manufacturing Leadership Coalition, which UCLA co-founded in 2006. Partners from more than 30 states include representatives from academia and government, as well as dozens of industry partners, including Google, Microsoft and Northrop Grumman. The new Smart Manufacturing Innovation Institute seeks to fuel industry growth in L.A., California and across the nation, using more than $140 million in public-private investments to develop advanced manufacturing technology and support a workforce and education pipeline.

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