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Council on Competitiveness, IDC Release Study on HPC and Innovation

July 10, 2008

WASHINGTON and FRAMINGHAM, Mass.—Today, the Council on Competitiveness released a groundbreaking study that benchmarks the extent to which the U.S. private sector is leveraging high performance computing (HPC) to drive innovation for global competitive advantage. The study is a continuation of the Council’s leadership in benchmarking competitiveness drivers and the critical components to long-term economic success. The study was conducted in partnership with the Council’s research partner, market analyst firm IDC.

Advance. Benchmarking Industrial Use of High Performance Computing for Innovation (no charge PDF) examines the use of HPC for innovation in four economically important industries whose leading firms have known histories of HPC usage: the aerospace, automotive, bio-life sciences and energy sectors. The study also explores the extent to which their supply chains have embraced HPC, and compares the leading U.S. firms with select, “best-in-class” international competitors.

“I believe that modeling, simulation, and large scale analysis with HPC is vital to maintaining an edge in American innovation,” said Richard H. Herman, co-chair of the Council’s HPC Initiative and chancellor of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. “High performance computing is simply transforming business processes world wide.”

The most noteworthy finding of the study was that U.S. tier 1 energy firms are outpacing other U.S. industries in integrating HPC into critical business functions. The most unexpected finding was that few suppliers to U.S. tier 1 companies in the surveyed industries use HPC or even desktop workstations today. This suggests that the innovation readiness of these industries as a whole is not very deep.

“This benchmarking study reveals both the progress and opportunity for U.S. businesses to bolster their competitiveness by applying HPC more aggressively,” said David E. Shaw, co-chair of the Council’s HPC Initiative and chief executive officer of his research group, D. E. Shaw Research. “HPC provides breakthrough insights that dramatically streamline not only R&D and engineering, but also business practices such as data mining, logistics and custom manufacturing.”

“Three years ago, the Council was the first to show the critical linkage between HPC and economic competitiveness. Today, the Council is pleased to release the first study to benchmark the extent industries are using HPC to bolster innovation and productivity,” said Suzy Tichenor, vice president and director of the Council on Competitiveness’ HPC initiative.

“A series of studies IDC conducted for the Council during the past three years confirmed the vital role that modeling and simulation with HPC technology plays in driving private-sector competitiveness,” according to Steve Conway, IDC research vice president for HPC.

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IDC Contact: Steve Conway
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Contact:

Lisa Hanna
T 202 383 9507
F 202 682 5150
lhanna@compete.org