NEXT: RISD 2020-2027

Created collaboratively by members of the RISD community, NEXT, RISD’s seven-year strategic plan (PDF), proposes how we intend to educate students for the future and bring our current creative practices to bear on today’s most critical social, political and environmental challenges.

Since beginning implementation of the plan in spring 2019, the RISD community has made considerable progress toward our goals. To see what we have accomplished together in that time, continue below. We also invite you to read the NEXT two-year progress report for next steps, priorities and more details.

Year two progress report

This report outlines the first two years of progress in implementing NEXT: RISD 2020–2027, our seven-year strategic plan. It details the specific work we’ve done to generate new knowledge and address issues of social justice and sustainability, key operational and financial improvements, and next steps for advancing the plan.

Institutional plans

Social Equity and Inclusion

Acknowledging that systemic racism harms all members of our community and is at odds with RISD’s values, the college and museum have committed to a series of proactively anti-racist action steps. The latest initiatives are inspired by the student-led RISD Anti-Racism Coalition (risdARC) and a group of BIPOC faculty members instigating much-needed change. RISD’s evolving Social Equity and Inclusion Action Plan details important steps members of our community are taking to ensure that we uphold core principles of equity, inclusion, access, agency and mutual respect, and that these values define our campus culture.

Campus Master Plan

Starting in 2012, the RISD community set out on a master plan process in support of the college's 2012-2017 Strategic Plan. Rather than taking a 20th century approach to master planning, developing a static list of projects, RISD chose to develop a set of dynamic and responsive tools calibrated to sustain long-term core values, principles and policies. This master plan was designed to persist through future changes in leadership, economic variability, and pedagogical and technological advances.

Our progress

SPUR Grants Support Site-Specific Research

RISD students and recent alums are using funding from RISD Research to develop interdisciplinary projects with communities around the world.

Opening Doors for Young Artists

Project Open Door students are back on campus this summer, trying their hands at everything from textiles to toy design in long-running RISD program.

Maharam Fellows Make a Difference

RISD students and recent grads are using design thinking skills to support positive change in Africa, Asia and North and South America.

Black Joy Matters

A SPUR-funded project by grad student Zoë Pulley presents positive images of Black people to counteract the negative imagery flooding the media.

Hyundai Collaborative Propels Student Research

RISD students working across disciplines explore the relationship between nature, art and design in third year of synergistic partnership.

Opioid Crisis Spurs Compassionate Design

A spring studio offered through RISD’s Center for Complexity offers fresh ideas for Rhode Island’s harm reduction center pilot program.

Getting Ahead of Climate Change

RISD Architecture students participating in the Envision Resilience Challenge draw up radical plans in response to projected sea-level rise in Warren, RI. 

Preparing for Rising Seas

Landscape Architecture students develop environmentally just proposals for managing sea-level rise in the Narragansett Bay as part of the Envision Resilience Challenge.

Questions and feedback

Check this page frequently to find updates on progress and metrics. Questions? Email planning@risd.edu.