100 Minds

From around the world

Joichi Ito

Director,
MIT Media Lab

Cambridge, United States

One hundred years from now, the role of science and technology will be about becoming part of nature rather than trying to control it.

One hundred years from now, the role of science and technology will be about becoming part of nature rather than trying to control it.

So much of science and technology has been about pursuing efficiency, scale and “exponential growth” at the expense of our environment and our resources. We have rewarded those who invent technologies that control our triumph over nature in some way. This is clearly not sustainable.

We must understand that we live in a complex system where everything is interrelated and interdependent and that everything we design impacts a larger system.

My dream is that 100 years from now, we will be learning from nature, integrating with nature and using science and technology to bring nature into our lives to make human beings and our artifacts not only zero impact but a positive impact to the natural system that we live in.

Joichi Ito Bio:

Joichi Ito is the Director of the MIT Media Lab. He is the Chair of Creative Commons, on the Board of Trustees of The Knight Foundation, co-founder and board member of Digital Garage, an Internet company in Japan. He is on the board of a number of non-profit organizations including The Mozilla Foundation, WITNESS and Global Voices. He has created numerous Internet companies including PSINet Japan, Digital Garage and Infoseek Japan and was an early stage investor in Twitter, Six Apart, Wikia, Flickr, Last.fm, Kongregate, Fotonauts/Fotopedia, Kickstarter and other Internet companies. He is the Guild Custodian of the World of Warcraft guild, We Know. He is a PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer, an Emergency First Responder instructor and a Divers Alert Network instructor.

Ito was named by Businessweek as one of the 25 Most Influential People on the Web in 2008. In 2011, Ito was chosen by Nikkei Business as one of the 100 most influential people for the future of Japan and by Foreign Policy Magazine as one of the "Top 100 Global Thinkers." In 2011, he received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Oxford Internet Institute in recognition of his role as one of the world's leading advocates of Internet freedom.