Jonah Brucker-Cohen on Thu, 20 Jan 2005 04:44:14 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime> MIT Media Lab Europe closes

This is resent from another list by me - sorry to people in advance if they 
got this twice...thanks

There had been speculation about MLE closing or changing its funding model 
for the last year or so - therefore its not a surprise to many employees 
there and others in Dublin that this was going to happen. MLE's failure to 
attract sponsors was both a result of the economic downturn since 2000 and 
an unclear, and unstandardized model of bringing sponsors and potential 
sponsors in touch with the research and projects that were going on in the 
lab. This seemed to be always fluctuating, in constant transition, and 
therefore a bit unstable - esp with the current economic situation.

It saddens me that this had to happen, because I felt like MLE was 
important in attracting people to Dublin who might not have ever known 
about the culture and community that was happening there...Especially for 
myself and the DATA group ( ) that I co-founded with Nicky 
Gogan - there is a large, vibrant community of artists and researchers 
there (working outside of the MLE community) who were very interested in 
learning more about Media Art and Research in both European and Global 
contexts. The closing of MLE does not signify an end for creative digital 
media in Dublin, as the Digital Hub's ( exhibitions 
and various local colleges and universities have strong programs focused on 
new media design and implementation. Some of these were strengthened by 
people brought into the country through MLE, but I think they will remain 
as strong even after its demise.

In the end, MLE probably lost out more because of its failure to integrate 
more closely with local institutions, rather than any poor quality of 
research, etc... This is unfortunate, but there is a lot to be learned by 
its process and the enthousiasm and hard work some of its researchers 
brought to the community of Dublin, and Ireland as a whole.


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