$100 Million Gift Creates New Design Research Center at MIT

A $100 million gift to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology will establish a new interdisciplinary center focused on design research, thinking and entrepreneurship, the institute announced Wednesday.

The donation comes from the Morningside Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the TH Chan family.

The new center, known as the MIT Morningside Academy for Design, aims to foster collaboration and innovation across academic disciplines – including engineering, science, management, computing, architecture, planning and the arts – to address such pressing global issues as climate change, public health, transportation and civic engagement.

The academy, which will be housed at MIT’s School of Architecture and Planning, is expected to launch in September.

“At MIT, we sometimes describe our work as ‘inventing the future,'” said MIT President L. Rafael Reif. “Beyond the technical, scientific and analytical strengths of the institute, this mission requires a deep humanity and imagination – the ability to listen carefully and think broadly, to reframe old problems in unexpected ways, to crystallize bold new visions, to weave the wisdom of different disciplines and voices into new and human solutions – these are essential strengths of design thinking.

“The MIT Morningside Academy for Design will amplify the impact of MIT’s existing world-class design programs…We couldn’t be more grateful for this transformative gift.”

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