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Podcast: Exploring the mindset behind big ideas

Good ideas never exist in a vacuum. Here's how five MIT alumni are putting big ideas into real-world practice.
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In a new podcast, five MIT alumni discuss how they are using unconventional thinking to confront real-world problems.
In a new podcast, five MIT alumni discuss how they are using unconventional thinking to confront real-world problems.
Image: Alan Scott

Good ideas never exist in a vacuum — they come from life experiences, world views, curiosity, hard work, and collective brain power. And when put to practice, the best ideas address real issues and solve real problems.

And MIT is never at a shortage of big ideas. The Institute’s mindset lends itself to digging deeper to find solutions that question the status quo. So, how are MIT alumni putting this solve-anything mentality into practice? And what are some big ideas — and solutions — that are making a tangible impact? In a new Slice of MIT podcast, five MIT alumni discuss how they are attacking real-world problems with unconventional thinking. 

You’ll hear how a hacking ethos is leading to breakthroughs in medicine; how embracing new technologies will shape the camera of the future; how rethinking microbes could change the way we treat disease; and how crowd-sourcing is helping protect Earth from asteroids. (A written transcript of the podcast is also available.)

The podcast features: 

  • Hans Peter Brøndmo ’87, an an entrepreneur who has spent his career at the intersection of technology innovation and consumer empowerment;
  • Lina Colucci, a co-director of MIT Hacking Medicine and a doctoral candidate in the Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology Program, with a focus on non-invasive, portable sensors;
  • Priya Garg ’15, a co-director of MIT Hacking Medicine, who has conducted research with the MIT Biomechatronics Group, the Linda Griffith Lab, Covidien, and CAMTech;
  • Jenn Gustetic SM ’07, the assistant director for open innovation in the Executive Office of the U.S. President and the Office of Science and Technology Policy, whose career has focused on open innovation, open government, innovation, public-private partnerships, and technology policy; and
  • Bernat Olle SM ’05, PhD ’07, MBA ’07, CEO of Vedanta Biosciences, who was named 2013 Innovator of the Year by MIT Technology Review Spain and awarded the 2015 Princess of Girona Award by the King of Spain in 2015.

Listen to the podcast on Slice of MIT, the Alumni Association’s SoundCloud page, or by subscribing on iTunes.

This podcast was produced to coincide with HUBweek, Boston’s week-long celebration of the arts, science, and innovation; and Solve, a new MIT program that connects creative thinkers, doers, and influencers to explore, model, and test new solutions to the world’s most pressing problems.

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