What a difference a letter makes. Earlier this year, Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) President John Maeda helped lead the government-supported movement to transform the educational focus of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) to STEAM by adding Art.
From Maeda’s perspective, art and design has overtaken technology as the dominant transformational force for the 21st century. Much as science and technology transformed the last hundred years, he argues design can simplify complex issues and help us respond to new challenges.
“With good design less equals more,” Maeda has said. “It started with the iPod. Now we can buy as much or as little tech as we want. Less equals more because design balances the desire for technology and the utility of technology. Therefore, technology is now less important. It makes design more visible and helps to balance between wanting more and less.”
Today, we’re delighted to announce that Maeda is joining eBay Inc. as the Chair of a newly-created eBay Inc. Design Advisory Board. He will report directly to Chief Executive Officer John Donahoe. Maeda is uniquely qualified to help eBay Inc. drive design innovation in the commerce revolution to create step-change in product experiences our customers love.
Maeda’s eBay role will complement his new position at the esteemed venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers, which he will join in January, following his resignation today from RISD.
Maeda originally joined RISD in 2008 and previously served as associate director of research at the MIT Media Lab and is currently on the boards of Sonos, Quirky, and Wieden+Kennedy, and on the Davos World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on New Models of Leadership. Maeda received the AIGA Medal in 2010 and is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art.
We heartily welcome Maeda to the eBay Inc. family and look forward to this innovative partnership.