About – RISD Center for Complexity


About – RISD Center for Complexity
RISD Center for Complexity

The Center for Complexity is a platform for transdisciplinary collaboration and innovation, informed by global events and creative practices, founded to benefit scholars, practitioners, a diverse range of partners, and the RISD community.

We are interested in systems and their big challenges. We believe they must be addressed by methods that link minds, disciplines, geographies, and scales. The Center connects thinking and doing through research, publishing, and collaborative projects by drawing on the creative talents of the RISD community and a global network of collaborators.

As a working environment that prizes the progressive development of creative approaches to systemic challenges, we recognize diversity as an essential catalyst. Our work requires us to encounter the systems that deny or restrict social access on the basis of race, ethnicity, economic class, gender, sexuality, spiritual practice, disability, and age, among other characteristics. We seek to transform these systems for the better.

It is our intention to build an environment where it is safe to take risks. This means being willing to push our boundaries while being strictly respectful of those of our collaborators, partners, and participants.

The CfC’s work is guided by the idea that in order to tackle complexity, we must create new knowledge by ordering information according to the task at hand, not according to logics of the past.


In partnership with the Center for Complexity and Office of Research, the Strategic Programs group works with RISD’s partners to develop immersive, studio-based teaching that enhance the creative and responsive capacities of individuals and groups committed to flourishing in environments where uncertainty and complexity are the norm.


The Distinguished Visiting Fellows Program welcomes practitioners from the field of art & design interested in exploring, deepening and furthering their practice.



About – RISD Center for Complexity