Economic Transformation News

CDI Particiates in National Innovation Network

CDI Receives Grant to Create a National Innovation Network


The Center for Design Innovation (CDI) has received a grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to develop a national Network of Excellence for Science, Engineering, Arts and Design.  CDI will receive $43,493 to work with Texas A&M University and the Maryland Institute College of Art over the next few months to bring together researchers and research practices that bridge computer science, engineering and creativity. The effort follows prior meetings funded by NSF in which researchers considered methods for interdisciplinary work and its potential for innovation and education.

“It is a great honor for a young organization such as CDI to have been selected as one of the sites developing this high-level network,” said Carol Strohecker, CDI director.

“On September 30 and October 1, we will welcome researchers and practioners from across the country whose careers have been immersed in combining arts and sciences to advance entertainment, education and technology development. Our group believes strongly that a national network to support science, arts, engineering and design collaborations will result in diverse combinations of expertise that will lead to innovations benefiting industry, nonprofit organizations, academia and communities.

“At CDI, we have already seen the intellectual, cultural and economic potential of creative intersections of art, science and technology,” Strohecker added. “Our emerging capability in motion capture supports not only animation for films, video games and educational media, but improvements in health care related to physical and occupational therapy. Our rapid prototyping techniques support design and development of furnishings, medical devices and industrial designs prior to manufacturing. These are just two examples of bringing together computer science, engineering and creativity to have a positive impact on many different areas that affect people’s lives.”

About the Center for Design Innovation
The CDI was established in 2005 as a multi-campus research center of the UNC system. The Advisory Board is appointed by the UNC Office of the President. The Center’s mission is to create an environment that supports creative thinking as a means of fostering the growth of education, research and commercial enterprise. CDI began initial operations in 2007 at an interim site in Winston Tower and is currently planning a 27,000 square foot facility to be constructed in the Piedmont Triad Research Park. CDI represents an inter-institutional partnership between Winston-Salem State University, the University of North Carolina School of the Arts and Forsyth Technical Community College. On a project basis, collaborations also include a range of individuals and organizations involved in supporting the center’s interdisciplinary agenda.

Early results are posted at