Southwestern PA New Economy Collaborative
Build Back Better: A Year in Review

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

4-5 p.m.

The SWPA New Economy Collaborative invites you to join us online as we reflect on how a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity presented by the Build Back Better Regional Challenge is ensuring Southwestern PA is the place to be for robotics and automation. The hour-long program will center on a panel discussion between leaders of five regional projects focused on robotics adoption, commercialization, and workforce development. Learn more about the financial and business support services these projects offer to local manufacturers, startups, and entrepreneurs, and the training options available to students and workers looking to transition into the robotics and advanced manufacturing sectors.



Farnam Jahanian, Ph.D.

Co-chair, SWPA New Economy Collaborative
President, Carnegie Mellon University

State of Robotics in Southwestern PA

Benjamin Pratt

Regional Economic Competitiveness Officer, SWPA New Economy Collaborative

Project Leads Panel

Small- & Medium-sized Enterprises Robotics Adoption

Matthew Holjes

Managing Director, Business Development, Catalyst Connection

The Robotics Manufacturing Hub & Innovation Accelerators

Tasha Miller

Programs Manager Technology Development, Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing (ARM) Institute

Expanded Pathways to New Economy Careers

Jennifer Lasser

Director of Workforce and Economic Development, Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission

The Robotics Factory

Kevin Dowling

Managing Director of Hardware and Robotics Factory, Innovation Works

Expanded Pathways to Entrepreneurship

Corey Turner

Executive Director, Expanded Pathways to Entrepreneurship, Carnegie Mellon University

Moderated by Jenn Apicella

Executive Director, Pittsburgh Robotics Network


Toward the Future & Farewell

Stefani Pashman

Co-chair, SWPA New Economy Collaborative
CEO, Allegheny Conference on Community Development

The Southwestern Pennsylvania New Economy Collaborative is an 11-county coalition of labor, nonprofit, and university partners advancing the region’s robotics and automation cluster through public-private-philanthropic partnership. The Collaborative was awarded a $62.7 million grant through the U.S. Economic Development Administration’s Build Back Better Regional Challenge to fund five regional projects aimed at providing long-term opportunities in the growing robotics and autonomy industry for individuals, businesses, and communities in southwestern Pennsylvania.