Media Group Fall 2011 update

Summer is always a good time for housekeeping so, this past summer, the Media Group conducted technical and content updates of the website. This fall we will be communicating a plan for training academic staff and faculty to manage specific content areas. In the interim Susan Curran, our web editor, continues to try to keep each department’s area of the site as accurate as possible. Please contact her directly at or 454-6344 should you spot anything on the site that needs updating. Until we open up content management, please also continue to send bios, links and photos to Susan for the faculty pages. There are still too many pages that lack these important elements—especially as we enter the recruitment season.

The Editorial team also continues to publish a steady stream of quality new stories; faculty are encouraged to view the ongoing repository at You’ll see recent stories there on Project Open Door, Oren Sherman’s Entrepreneurship class, and Ellen Driscoll’s floating piece Distant Mirrors. Among the faculty-focused stories in the pipeline for the next few weeks are a piece about the Apparel project led by Beth Bentley and Karen Young to design costumes for the Merce Cunningham performance at Brown and one about Anne West’s new book. As always we welcome any good story leads about newsworthy faculty and studio projects; please send your suggestions to Liisa Silander at

The Media group also worked with OMA and HR to create the new site at, which corresponds to the beautiful prints displayed throughout campus. We’ve also transitioned to be an archive of all the great video and documentation that Brian Goldberg has provided from the symposium last spring.

This fall the Media group is busy with new campaigns for Admissions/Enrollment and Institutional Engagement. We’ve developed creative print and email collateral for the Annual Fund along with a new series of email efforts to prospective students highlighting the Ceramics, Furniture Design, Glass, Jewelry + Metalsmithing and Sculpture departments. We’ve also integrated new approaches to collecting and evaluating data regarding the performance of our campaigns, which allows us to adjust and respond in strategic ways over time. Another large project in the works is the Fall/Winter issue of RISD XYZ, which is due out at the end of this month and focuses on books (i.e. selected alumni who are passionate about writing, illustrating, designing, publishing, hand-making and commenting on them).

Until further notice, the proposal to take down the RISD Intranet is not imminent. We are, however, trying to prune away outdated or unneeded content and ask everyone’s help in doing so. Taking down the Intranet will ultimately be tied to the launch of new COLLEAGUE tools which, combined with, will replace core Intranet functionality. In the meantime, existing areas are being maintained and we’ll leave the Intranet up until there are better alternatives in place. Many faculty use the Intranet to find contact information for other employees. This information is fed from the school’s data system—which means it will remain updated and you may continue to use the Intranet to search for contact info. Please note, however, that offers the same information—if you type any faculty or staff name into the search box at the top right of any page, you will find contact info.

Lastly, Media is transitioning and decentralizing the many Samsung digital screens displayed in various spaces such as the Design Center, ProvWash, 15 West and the Met. These screens are being re-purposed to display departmental work or, in some cases, CNN.

Best wishes for a new academic year!

Liisa Silander, RISD web site, RISDXYZ, Susan Curran

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