COVID-19 Rapid Innovation Dashboard Provides Entry Point to MIT's Pandemic Activities

Website aggregates and organizes coronavirus projects from MIT students, faculty, alumni, and staff from across campus and around the world.
By: MA Institute of Technology—Innovation Initiative
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CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - April 21, 2020 - PRLog -- MIT Innovation Initiative has launched the COVID-19 Rapid Innovation Dashboard, a new website, as a way for people around the world to become activated and involved in Coronavirus projects from the prestigious university.

MIT is a vast hub of innovation activity with a decentralized nature–inspiring amazing creativity and huge impact. The fact that so many departments, labs, and centers have jumped into action to fight the pandemic presents a unique challenge in trying to quantify activities.

"We wanted to create a single online space where all the amazing work the many various members of the MIT Community could feature their efforts to fight the pandemic—to recruit volunteers, share ideas, and gain support", said Gene Keselman, Executive Director of MIT Innovation Initiative, the group that created the site and the data infrastructure underpinning it.

The COVID-19 Rapid Innovation Dashboard launched with 6 projects on March 19, 2020 and in the days since, has exploded into housing over 130 projects, including over 30 MIT-affiliated startups and 16 academic research projects. It also has listings for 20 funding opportunities—grants, prize competitions, etc.—available to project leaders. Projects range from well-being and community-building efforts like the virtual MIT campus by MIT Busy Beavers team, to the contact tracing app Private Kit: COVID SafePaths which has recently received much news coverage.

On growth and next steps, Keselman said, "The MIT community responded so rapidly and with such enthusiasm that we've already launched a version 1.5 with enhanced navigation to drive users to the projects they're most interested in. Even when we go back to the office, issues will persist, we'll be dealing with things that are the runoff from COVID-19. There will be an opportunity to keep this going to solve all kinds of second- or third-order problems."

COVID-19 Rapid Innovation Dashboard Fast Facts:
●      Total active projects: 145
●      MIT alumni projects: 30
●      MIT research projects:  17
●      MIT startups: 42
●      Funding opportunities: 21
●      Site users: 13,000
●      Pageviews: 25,000
●      User countries: 128

●      Rapid Innovation Dashboard:
●      MIT Innovation Initiative:
●      The Tech story on virtual MIT campus:
●      Reuters Story on Private Kit: COVID SafePaths:
●      MIT News story:

David Sweeney
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