‘Deploy or die’ : The role of design in supporting entrepreneurial processes at the MIT Media Lab

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‘Deploy or die’ : The role of design in supporting entrepreneurial processes at the MIT Media Lab

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Publication Conference Paper, other
Title ‘Deploy or die’ : The role of design in supporting entrepreneurial processes at the MIT Media Lab
Author(s) Simeone, Luca
Date 2015
Editor(s) Spender, J C; Schiuma, Giovanni; Albino, Vito
English abstract
PURPOSE – Nowadays, thanks to conditions such as agile manufacturing (e.g., using affordable machines like 3-D printers, laser cutters, small CNCs or Pick & Place), low production costs and quick execution cycles, it is easier to turn ideas into a finished product ready to be distributed. Joi Ito, the director of the MIT Media Lab, created the slogan ‘Deploy or die’ precisely to encourage the researchers of the lab to take these conditions into consideration and to push their projects up to the production stage (and thus beyond the creation of a demo). This paper examines how design is used at the Media Lab to support this ‘deploy or die’ approach and, consequently, to foster entrepreneurial processes fuelled by the research activities of the lab. The paper contends that design activities - such as user research and user testing, rapid and frequent prototyping, visualization techniques, co-design, attention to the brand experience – contribute in igniting and sustaining the ‘deploy or die’ approach. APPROACH – The study is the result of an investigation - also based on ethnographic methods – conducted by the author in the city of Cambridge, MA across 2011 and 2014. The application of an ethnographic approach with the direct involvement of researchers in the field has proven to be a common element of a good number of recent studies on organizations (Czarniawska 2012). ORIGINALITY – The study contributes to the ongoing discussions on how design can support entrepreneurship, with particular reference to the area of academic entrepreneurship. PRACTICAL IMPLICATIONS –The paper contends that design activities contribute in igniting and sustaining the ‘deploy or die’ approach and, consequently, could be adopted by research organizations to support operations in the area of academic entrepreneurship.
Publisher Institute of Knowledge Asset Management
Host/Issue Culture, Innovation and Entrepreneurship : connecting the knowledge dots;
ISSN 2280-787X
ISBN 978-88-96687-07-9
Pages 1552-1566
Language eng (iso)
Subject(s) Academic entrepreneurship
Design
Innovation
Humanities/Social Sciences
Research Subject Categories::INTERDISCIPLINARY RESEARCH AREAS
Note 10th International forum on knowledge asset dynamics, IFKAD, Bari Italy, 10-12 June 2015
Handle http://hdl.handle.net/2043/19182 (link to this page)
Link http://www.ifkad.org/ (external link to related web page)

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