Fact Sheet


  • Year founded: 1985
  • Graduate Concentration: Media Arts and Sciences
  • Number of graduate students (2013-2014): 146 (80 master's, 66 PhD)
  • Number of Faculty and Principal Investigators: 28
  • Number of sponsors: 80+
  • Annual operating budget: approx. $45 million

Actively promoting a unique, antidisciplinary culture, the MIT Media Lab goes beyond known boundaries and disciplines, encouraging the most unconventional mixing and matching of seemingly disparate research areas. It creates disruptive technologies that happen at the edges, pioneering such areas as wearable computing, tangible interfaces, and affective computing. Today, faculty members, research staff, and students at the Lab work in more than 25 research groups on more than 350 projects that range from digital approaches for treating neurological disorders, to a stackable, electric car for sustainable cities, to advanced imaging technologies that can “see around a corner.” The Lab is committed to looking beyond the obvious to ask the questions not yet asked–questions whose answers could radically improve the way people live, learn, express themselves, work, and play.


Unlike other labs at MIT, the Media Lab comprises both a degree-granting academic program and a research program. Students with backgrounds ranging from engineering, to physics, to education, to music make up the graduate student community at the Lab. In addition, some 200 undergraduates come to work at the Media Lab each year through MIT's Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP).


The Media Lab was founded in 1985 by MIT Professor Nicholas Negroponte and the late Jerome Wiesner (former science advisor to President John F. Kennedy and former President of MIT), who foresaw the coming convergence of computing, publishing, and broadcast, fueled by changes in the communications industry. As this convergence accelerated, it spurred interconnected developments in the unusual range of disciplines that the Lab brought together, including cognition, electronic music, graphic design, video, and holography, as well as work in computation and human-machine interfaces.


  • Joi Ito, Director
  • Hiroshi Ishii, Associate Director
  • Andrew Lippman, Associate Director
  • Mitchel Resnick, Academic Head—Program in Media Arts and Sciences (on leave)
  • Pattie Maes, Acting Academic Head—Program in Media Arts and Sciences
  • V. Michael Bove, Jr., Undergraduate Officer—Program in Media Arts and Sciences
  • Chris Schmandt, UROP Coordinator—Program in Media Arts and Sciences
  • Linda Peterson, Director of Academic Program Administration
  • Ellen Hoffman, Director of Communications
  • Peter Cohen, Director of Development and Strategy
  • Jessica Tsymbal, Director of Facilities
  • Martha Collins, Director of Human Resources
  • Michail Bletsas, Director of Network and Computing Systems
  • Barak Berkowitz, Director of Operations and Strategy


MIT Media Lab
77 Mass. Ave., E14/E15
Cambridge, MA 02139-4307 USA


The Media Lab complex comprises two buildings:

Building E14, 75 Amherst Street
Wiesner Building (E15), 20 Ames Street
Cambridge, MA 02142


Download MIT Media Lab Overview document
PDF, 2 pages