MIT Meets RISD: John Maeda Becomes President.

In a brilliant move, John Maeda from the MIT Media Lab, is taking over as the new president of RISD, one of preeminent art and design schools in the world. I’ve know John for many years and he is one of the most brilliant minds that we have in the innovation/design space. His book on The Laws of Simplicity is a must-read.

Reena Jana has an insightful Q&A with John on her Next blog.

Here’s what John has to say about the relationship between business managers and design thinkers:

Q—What sorts of new relationships with corporations might you cultivate at RISD, if you are interested in doing so?

A—Corporations today, by their razor sharp focus on the “bottom line” and quarterly earnings, have lost their ability to innovate. You folks at BW talk about it all the time. But no solutions are proferred. People think that mixing design school mentality into a business school might work; or maybe mixing business school mentality into a design school might work. Add technology, shake, then stir. Voila! What do you have? Essentially a nice mixture of oil and water that, with the progression of time will naturally separate back to the oil and the water. What is needed is a more integrative approach to engaging business-thinking with creative-thinking. How this will be done? What a great challenge to work on. That’s why I’m headed to RISD.”

Check out John himself explaining what he’s going to do at RISD—sort of.

And check out David Armano’s post on John and why he wants more exposure of design students to the business world.

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal.