Rhode Island Science and Technology Advisory Council (STAC)

Making Innovation Central to Rhode Island's Future Gina M. Raimondo, Governor

Arts and Technology Touted as Catalyst for Economic Growth

Published on June 24, 2013

House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi visited the RI School of Design today to tour the internationally recognized institution and hear ideas for fostering an American economic resurgence based on an enhanced focus on innovation and technology. Meeting with about 20 representatives from the private sector, government, medicine, finance and education at a forum hosted by U.S. Rep. David Cicilline, Pelosi called the state a "perfect, intimate environment " at the epicenter of creativity.

"I am grateful for Leader Pelosi's relentless work on this issue and I am honored that she could join us in Rhode Island today to emphasize the opportunities we have to support innovation and technology as we work to get our state moving again," said Cicilline. "

President John Maeda presented a historical look at how artists and designers have worked with industry to make the things we use both functional and desirable. RISD was founded as Americans worked to enhance textiles through art and design.  Generations of makers have continued that tradition to today with innovation in products from industrial materials to flexible consumer power strips.

"I believe we are at a turning point," said RISD President John Maeda. "We believe RISD can be used much more as a national resource to reignite American manufacturing and that and technology can be a catalyst for economic growth and competitiveness.

Pelosi's tour included a demonstration of a Jacquard loom used to create textiles and a presentation from RISD students learning technical critical-making skills.

 

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