Research abounds in RIT’s College of Art and Design, supplying students with additional needs, skills, technologies, and experiences that enrich their academic careers. The college is home to a recognized world leader in preservation research, archived collections of dozens of eminent designers, sponsored research by faculty and staff, and collaborations with esteemed industry partners.
Design Research at RIT
Faculty members discuss work being done in new media design, 3D digital design and industrial design and how collaboration with researchers in other fields like engineering and sciences is impacting their and students’ work.
RIT’s Image Permanence Institute (IPI) is a nonprofit laboratory renowned for its development and deployment of sustainable practices for the preservation of images and cultural heritage. With funding primarily from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Institute of Museum and Library Services, and Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, IPI provides information, consulting services, practical tools, and preservation technology to libraries, archives, and museums on a global scale.
The archives at RIT serve the prevalent role of being dynamic and didactic research and educational tools. Between RIT’s Vignelli Center for Design Studies and Cary Graphic Arts Collection, more than 85 prominent designers’ work is accessible for study by students, faculty, staff, scholars, and researchers everywhere.
Faculty from all College of Art and Design schools are immersed in research, and their partnerships with industry enhance student learning opportunities. One of the latest examples is Christye Sisson, associate professor and program chair of Photographic Sciences, being the principal investigator of a government-funded project. Sisson, other faculty, and students are part of a world-class group of researchers working to develop an algorithmic-based platform that can identify image, audio, and video manipulation.
Emma Sarles ’17 (industrial design) has taken the road less traveled to become an engineer. Without ever earning a bachelor’s degree in engineering, Sarles has spent the last two years working toward a customized professional studies master’s degree that specializes in medical device engineering and applied biomaterials.
Current Image Permanence Institute research initiatives include projects that will inform the recovery of water-damaged inkjet prints in cultural institutions that have experienced water emergencies, and improving preservation environmental management strategies.