Research on manufacturing technology, operations and performance at MIT reflects the wider context of growing industrial competition in a global economic environment. A basic objective is to create a systematic knowledge base, through the application of systems thinking and quantitative analysis, leading to an improved understanding of the fundamental determinants of industrial growth and decline. An example is the discovery of lean production principles as a result of prior research focusing on the international motor vehicle industry, an on-going multi-year program at MIT involving a network of researchers worldwide. Systemic lean principles, encompassing all industrial operations and covering the entire enterprise, represent a fundamentally new, dynamic, production paradigm. The adoption of lean principles is beginning to transform an increasing number of industries, by fostering continuous technological innovation, the building of new organizational relationships, the creation of new cooperative arrangements, and the establishment of new roles and responsibilities. Manufacturing research at MIT, including technical laboratory-based research on manufacturing systems as well as the more broadly-based industry studies, not only point the way to the advanced manufacturing processes of tomorrow but also provide a better understanding of processes of industrial growth and change.
Lean manufacturing refers to an evolving dynamic new process of production covering the total enterprise, embracing all aspects of industrial operations (product development, manufacturing, organization and human resources, customer support) and including customer-supplier networks, which is governed by a systemic set of principles, methods and practices. Key lean principles are perfect first-time quality, waste minimization by removing all activities that do not add value, continuous improvement, flexibility, and long-term relationships.
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對製造業技術的研究，操作和表現在反射生長工業競爭更寬的上下文在一個全球性經濟環境裡。一個基本的宗旨將創造一個系統的知識庫, 通過系統認為和定量分析的應用, 導致對工業發展和科技根本定列式的改善的理解。例子是在精瘦的生產原則的發現上由於預先的研究集中於國際機動車產業, 一個持續的多年節目在麻省理工學院介入研究員網路全世界。系統精瘦的原則, 包含所有工業操作和包括整個企業, 代表一根本上新, 動態, 生產範例。精瘦的原則的收養開始變換產業的一個增長的數字, 由促進連續的技術革新, 新組織上的關係大廈, 新合作安排的創作, 和新角色和責任的創立。製造業研究在麻省理工學院, 包括對製造系統的技術基於實驗室的研究以及基於寬廣的產業研究, 不僅點方式對明天的先進的製造過程而且提供對工業發展的過程的更好的理解和改變。精瘦的製造業提到生產的一個演變的動態新過程包括總企業, 接受所有工業操作(產品開發、製造業、組織和人力資源, 用戶支持的) 方面並且包括顧客供應商網路, 由系統套原則、方法和實踐治理。關鍵精瘦的原則是完善的首次質量, 廢低估由取消不增加價值、連續的改善、靈活性, 和長期關係的所有活動。