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AIAA AVIATION FORUM – Day 5 (June 19, 2020)
Forum Theme: We Get You Here, There and Now Everywhere
Day 5 Theme: Global Vision for Future
In as timely a talk as you'll experience at an AIAA Forum, Richard Aboulafia, an economist and aviation industry analyst from the Teal Group laid out in bare terms what the COVID-19 pandemic means, and is likely to portend for the aviation industry. Richard, as always, was informative and entertaining. He left us with both reasons to optimistic and reasons to be pessimistic about what's likely to happen in our industry. Chief among the reasons for optimism – that the airlines were better positioned financially this time for a downturn than they were previously, and that military aviation remains a strong market. As a cautionary note, however, he pointed out that IR&D spending at the two major large civil transport airframers is likely to take a sharp decline. Neither have new, clean-sheet, programs in the offing, and hence the reason for the pessimism. For the first time, the closing Forum 360 Panel was a roundtable discussion with the Forum's Executive Steering Committee, or ESC. The record of that discussion will help set the table nicely for content suggestions to future ESCs, whether for next year's Aviation Forum, or for other AIAA Forums and product lines. In his closing remarks, AIAA Executive Director, Dan Dumbacher, noted the "anti-fragility" of our industry, which gives us the capability to recover, grow and thrive.
Day 5 Top Take-Aways:
Quote of the Day: "The air transportation System of the future will be essential to our country. And how R&D investment is made is the key." -Dan Dumbacher, Executive Director of AIAA in his closing remarks.