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Manufacturing Contributes Nearly 9% To San Diego Economy

Manufacturing Contributes Nearly 9 Percent To San Diego's Economy


Kelly Cunningham, economist, National University System Institute for Policy Research

Mary Walshok, dean of extension, UC San Diego


What do drones, 3-D printers, beer and guitars have in common? They all make up part of San Diego's growing manufacturing sector.

Just in time for National Manufacturing Day, a new study by National University System for Policy Research shows manufacturing plays a big role in the region’s economy by supporting tens and thousands of good paying jobs.

The study finds manufacturing contributes nearly 9 percent to the region's gross domestic product (GDP) and has grown faster than the rest of the economy.

But the report points out employment is still a challenge, since there were fewer manufacturing jobs in 2013 compared to pre-recession levels.

Key findings

• Manufacturing employs just more than 94,000 people in San Diego;

• The average annual wage of a person in manufacturing in our region is $75,800, higher than the region's median income ($53,800);

• Manufacturing employment fell from 102,000 in 2007 to 94,800 in 2013;

• Most manufacturing jobs require a bachelor's degree;

On National Manufacturing Day, 25 local companies are opening their doors to the public for behind the scenes tours. To sign up for a tour and for other Manufacturing Day events visit

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