Paul McDonagh-Smith


Paul McDonagh-Smith

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Paul McDonagh-Smith is a Senior Lecturer in Information Technology at the MIT Sloan School of Management. In his research and teaching, Paul creates key intersection points between technology and business. He specializes in translating computer and data science into measurable business value that evolves organizational capability, transformation, and strategy.

He is the Faculty Director on MIT Sloan’s, ‘Accelerating Digital Transformation with Algorithmic Business Thinking’, and ‘Digital Learning Strategy’ programs. As an early pioneer in Digital Reality, Paul has successfully invented and innovated with Extended Reality (XR) and metaverse technologies across multiple industries for more than 20 years and is Faculty Director on MIT Sloan’s, ‘Business Implications of Extended Reality (XR): Harnessing the Value of AR, VR. Metaverse, and More’ program. Paul also teaches in, and contributes to, a wide range of MIT Sloan Executive Education programs.

McDonagh-Smith is also the MIT Sloan Office of Executive Education Digital Capability Leader. In this role, he directs the growing portfolio of digital programs, works with the MIT Sloan team to define digital strategy, and drives transformative technology experimentation.

His recent innovations include harnessing artificial intelligence and machine learning; XR and robotics to build and bring to market a series of digital collaboration products and platforms.

Through close collaboration with Faculty, Labs, and Schools across MIT, as well as an extensive global network of industry partners, Paul’s approach to entrepreneurship is built upon a bias for practical action. More technology ‘presentist’ than technology ‘futurist’, Paul enables teams to invent their future, starting today.

He provides digital transformation, business model and strategy guidance to organizations across multiple industries and geographies as well as to a range of international government departments.

Prior to MIT, Paul held senior roles in Optical Network Systems Engineering, R&D, Emerging Products and Technology, Business Transformation and Human Resources during a 20-year career in the telecoms industry.

Paul is an advisor to NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, under the supervision of chief scientist, Dr. James B. Garvin.

Recent Insights

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How to create an artificial intelligence strategy that takes into account key business priorities, organizational data strategy, and employee skills.

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Ideas Made to Matter

Generative AI research from MIT Sloan

Ideas about how to best deploy generative artificial intelligence, how it will affect the workforce, and how it should be regulated.

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Media Highlights

Press Source: The Christian Science Monitor

Labor pacts that ennoble

"We need to make sure that they’re [machines and technology] representing the best of who we are and can become as a species."

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Executive Education

Executive Education Course

Digital Learning Strategy

Organizations, schools, and government departments of today and tomorrow require an effective digital learning strategy to keep speed with innovation and upskill their workforces. Regardless of your industry, your employees expect smart, connected experiences that fit the way they live and work in a digital world. In this new, hands-on digital learning strategy course, we’ll give you the capability and confidence to harness current advanced technologies such as machine learning, augmented reality, and robotics in your education strategy. You’ll also look at digital learning and transformation technologies through a strategic lens that will help you create and deliver new value.

  • Dec 13-15, 2023
  • Apr 10-12, 2024
  • Oct 9-10, 2024
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Executive Education Course

Business Implications of Extended Reality (XR)

In this program, you will be guided through this course by MIT Sloan Senior Lecturer Paul McDonagh-Smith, an early pioneer in this space who has successfully invented and innovated with XR and metaverse technologies across multiple industries for more than 20 years. Throughout the course, you’ll have the chance to apply research-based frameworks and models to real world business opportunities and challenges. You will deepen your understanding of how XR and metaverse technologies can be used in your organizations and industries to create new value and sustainable competitive advantage today.

  • Dec 6-8, 2023
  • Sep 21-22, 2023
  • Mar 13-15, 2024
  • Aug 1-2, 2024
  • May 20-22, 2024
  • May 20-21, 2024
  • Sep 25-27, 2024
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