Illustration by Scott Gordon and Kristian Knutsen

Series: Foxconn In Wisconsin

Wisconsin's deal with electronics manufacturing giant Foxconn has stirred up a mix of excitement and doubt. The state offered the Taiwan-based company about $3 billion in economic incentives and a waiver on a variety of environmental and other regulations to build a large LCD fabrication complex. In return, Foxconn touted the possibility of creating thousands of jobs and invigorating Wisconsin as a Midwestern tech hub. This type of manufacturing would place considerable demands on the state's natural resources, especially water, and can create significant pollution. The net effect of this deal will take years to emerge, but boosters and skeptics alike agree that a Foxconn footprint would have profound and complex implications for Wisconsin's future.
Plans for the Foxconn development in Mount Pleasant to fill wetlands is raising concerns about the risk of floods along the Des Plaines River in Illinois. Scott Gordon of WisContext discusses what communities downstream from the factory site.
The question over where the Foxconn plant will draw its water from continues. UW-Parkside geosciences professor John Skalbeck said the application process to use Lake Michigan water differs from the diversion by Waukesha.
After months of negotiation, Gov. Scott Walker and Foxconn Chairman Terry Gou signed an incentive package contract between the company and Wisconsin.
As discussion over environmental impacts of Foxconn continues, proposed locations along Lake Michigan could involve the Great Lakes Compact. Scott Gordon of WisContext discusses the role that water usage plays in electronics manufacturing and the legal framework related to using Great Lakes water.
Foxconn is proposing to build an LCD fabrication facility in Wisconsin. Peter Adriaens of the University of Michigan explains how heavy metals used in producing electronics components pose potential dangers, as some are bioaccumulative and may remain in organisms for the rest of their lives.
Foxconn could be purchasing land in southeast Wisconsin for well above market value, meaning many small landowners could soon be millionaires. Not everyone is happy about it, however.
China-based electronics company Foxconn is one step closer to building a facility in Wisconsin, after signing a memorandum of understanding with Gov. Scott Walker.
Gov. Tony Evers announced he is seeking to renegotiate Wisconsin's contract with Foxconn, drawing ire from state Republicans. Bejing-based economics commentator Einar Tangen speaks to these developments.
With the news that Foxconn will be changing its initial manufacturing plans in Wisconsin, economist Einar Tangen and tech industry insider Paul Semenza weigh in on what the future holds for the LCD manufacturer in the state.
What are the prospects for legal challenges to various aspects of the state of Wisconsin's deal with Foxconn?