Most of you have probably heard of the STEM subjects. STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. These academic fields have been the focus of many federal governments around the world as they have been seen as the key to driving innovation.
But what you may not have heard of is something called STEAM. I hadn’t heard about it until this morning. STEAM is an initiative being led by the Rhode Island School of Design to integrate art and design into national agendas pertaining to STEM. STEM + Art = STEAM.
Here’s a snippet from RISD:
The goal is to foster the true innovation that comes with combining the mind of a scientist or technologist with that of an artist or designer. RISD offers endless examples of how art and design education teaches the flexible thinking, risk-taking and creative problem solving needed to solve today’s most complex and pressing challenges – from healthcare to urban revitalization to global warming.
I couldn’t agree more with this initiative. As somebody who thought a lot about how to combine design and technology in my own career, I believe that there are huge benefits to a multidisciplinary approach to problem solving and innovation. In fact, it’s one of the reasons I decided to go to Rotman for my MBA (see Business Design).
So if you feel the same way, I would encourage you to add yourself and/or your company to the “STEM to STEAM map” that RISD has created. Click here to do that.