The research: A collapsible water bottle, a garage for Segway scooters, a smarter umbrella. They were all invented in 15.783J, Steve Eppinger's highly innovative, interactive, and interdisciplinary product design and development class. Each year, Eppinger brings together students from MIT Sloan, the MIT School of Engineering, the Leaders for Manufacturing and System Design and Management programs (LFM/SDM Partnership), and the Rhode Island School of Design to create new tools for living.
While the inventions themselves break ground, Eppinger's process is arguably the most enduring innovation. It represents the kind of interdisciplinary collaboration he fosters as codirector of the LFM/SDM Partnership and as director of the Center for Innovation in Product Development.