Chancellor Angela Merkel and U.S. President Barack Obama recently opened the Hanover trade fair for industrial technology.
The exhibtion is well known for its promotion of the 4th Industrial Revolution, the advancement of manufacturing through automation and digitization.
Globally, Germany and the U.S. are considered the leading players in this field. However, unlike Germany, the United States has long discovered the value of such technology for its foreign and security policy.
Starting in 2014, the U.S. Defense Department began to lay the groundwork for what it calls the “Third Offset Strategy,” a $14 billion R&D investment initiative focused on innovative defense technologies. The strategy supports the broader goal of deterring opponents from readily using conventional military capabilities to enforce foreign policy objectives, a valid concern for many U.S. allies in Asia and Europe.
The strategy focuses not only on developing new technologies but on better leveraging commercial technologies to improve existing capabilities.