Summary of Neil’s review:
In Jack Buffington’s book, “Reinventing the Supply Chain,” he draws parallels between George Orwell’s call for local decision-making in the 1930s and a modern-day solution to 21st-century challenges. Buffington advocates for a decentralized political economy, leveraging 3-D manufacturing and Blockchain technology, alongside significant investments in STEM education. He emphasizes the importance of bridging the digital divide and preparing the workforce for the future, warning of increased inequality if these steps aren’t taken.
Buffington critiques the outdated supply chain system, highlighting its contribution to imbalanced economic growth and national security risks. He paints a picture of crumbling urban and rural communities with limited employment prospects. In contrast, he envisions a future where self-reliant communities, enabled by advanced technologies like broadband infrastructure and open-source blockchain systems, become the foundation of a national economy. Buffington’s work calls for a shift from physical supply chains to digital systems, revitalizing communities and promoting production through communal and global approaches.