menu

How Do We Foster A Culture Of Innovation? [PSFK NYC 2012]

How Do We Foster A Culture Of Innovation? [PSFK NYC 2012]
Advertising

Simon Collins, Dean of the School of Fashion at Parsons The New School for Design explains how to create innovative change within an education organization.

Dan Gould
  • 17 march 2012

On March 30, 2012, we will be hosting our sixth annual PSFK CONFERENCE NYC celebrating and sharing new ideas. Since 2007, the PSFK conference series has catered to creative professionals from around the world, exploring the latest trends, inspirations, and ideas. PSFK brings together the world’s leading creative thinkers with both established and emerging business leaders to bring to life the conversations that take place daily on PSFK.comClick here to purchase tickets and find additional information about this year’s event.

Speaking at the event will be Simon Collins, Dean of the School of Fashion at Parsons The New School for Design. Simon will talk about his work with the school, thoughts on education and how he has created innovative change within the organization.

Tell us about how you worked with Parsons to make it a more agile and innovative organization?

Parsons has always enjoyed immense respect from the industry, not least because of the impressive number of alumni who are household names — Marc Jacobs, Donna Karan, Tom Ford, Jason Wu, Anna Sui, Proenza Schouler, Alex Wang etc– and understandably the school was focused on education rather than, for instance, PR. Over the past 4 years we’ve run some very high profile projects working with the fashion industry and drawing on the very best of what our students and faculty are capable of. Some small, and some very large, with partners like LVMH, Christian Louboutin, Allen Edmonds, Li Ning, Braciallini, Saks etc we have got a lot of attention. Since we continue to deliver over and above what anyone expects, word has got around.

One restriction has always been time outside the classroom for our students and faculty to work on projects. We addressed this by strategically targeting specific projects at sections of our student and faculty populations who had time to spare at different points in the curriculum. We know when our students have the mind space to deliver and we target that. Furthermore,  my professional experience means I’ve an idea what our partners are looking for so I’ve been able to understand their goals and marry them with our own academic ones.

How do you maintain and evolve that culture of creativity?

Parsons is filled with students and faculty who are compelled to innovate by their very nature. They are constantly looking for challenging problems that they can apply their design skills to elegantly solving. In the past these efforts were largely targeted at internal projects. Over the past four years we have worked hard to show the world what we do. With every success we get more requests and are able to be ever more selective about who we work with and what we do. Hence the projects become more attractive and the quality goes ever upward.

Where did you find inspiration (or the models) for these changes?

My professional career involved working with Zegna in Italy, Fila in New York and Italy, Nike in Asia, Greg Norman in New York, Marks and Spencer in London and may others. From each I learned a little or a lot. Taken together I have a rich source of inspiration for all that we do at Parsons. If I was to point to a couple of examples I think the absolute commitment to quality that was part of the Marks and Spencer culture and the dedication to excellence that was part of Nike’s culture were particularly inspiring. I’ve picked up small tips along the way and they never quite leave my mind (You are your own brand, Bloom where you are planted, Bring value to the process, Just Do it etc). Cliches perhaps, but no less true for all that.

Thanks Simon!

Simon Collins@SimonCollins08

Click the banner below to purchase tickets and find additional information about this year’s event.

Advertising
Trending

Bringing Food Innovation To America's Crowded Milk Market

Food
Mobile Today

This Startup Wants To Digitize The Loose Coins In Your Pocket

CoinOut is a new app that lets you save your extra change from cash transactions as electronic funds

Advertising Today

McDonald’s Is Accepting Trash As Currency In Exchange For Burgers

An initiative in Stockholm is trying to keep streets clean while satisfying hunger

Trending

Get PSFK's Related Report: Future of Automotive

See All
Culture Today

Google Is Using Virtual Paper Airplanes To Bring People Closer Together

The tech giant released an app that lets people throw their good wishes out into the world on the International Day of Peace

Advertising Today

Get Paid For Traveling In San Francisco After Rush Hour

BART Perks rewards commuters who take early or late trains by giving them extra points to trade for money

Related Expert

Rem Koolhaas

Metropolitan Architecture

Culture Today

Artist Designs Covers For Books That Don’t Exist

Published by the fictional "Specious Books," the subversive works facilitate a conversation regarding the artistic integrity of graphic designers

Work Today

Editorial Roundtable: The Arrival Of The People-First Workplace

Managed By Q, Soma, Workbar, Primary, AltSchool and thinkPARALLAX enumerate the reasons why companies need an employee-embracing workforce in order to exist

Financial Services Today

Device Makes Digital Currency Feel Tangible

The concept gadget wants you to experience the highs and lows of spending money

PSFK LABS REPORT

Future Of Automotive
Scenarios Driving The Digital Transformation Of An Industry
NEW

PSFK Op-Ed september 23, 2016

Productivity Expert: The Magic Of The Five-Hour Workday

Stephan Aarstol, Founder of Tower Paddle Boards, explains why the modern notion of office hours needs to evolve

PSFK Labs september 22, 2016

The Future Of Work: Why Innovation Is Every Employee’s Job

PSFK Labs sits down with management at Johnson & Johnson to learn how the company comes up with their next ‘big idea’

Advertising Today

Lyft Gives Free Rides To Those Who Have Had Too Much To Drink

Thanks to a new partnership between the ride sharing service and Budweiser, drunk passengers are able to receive free rides

Design & Architecture Today

Why Building Better Offices Is The Key To Employee Engagement

Interaction Designer and Audio-visual Technologist at ESI Design illustrates the value in creating environments filled with surprise and delight

Augmented / Virtual Reality Today

NBC Is Planning To Stream The Presidential Debates In Virtual Reality

Partnering with AltspaceVR, the broadcaster offers another way for Americans to engage with the election season

Travel Today

What Happens When An Entire Airport Terminal Rebrands Itself?

JFK's Terminal 4 underwent a dramatic design facelift to guide and delight travelers

Home september 23, 2016

Watch This Fire Pit Dance Along To Your Favorite Song

Music City Fire is a system that is designed to flicker in time to ambient music

PSFK LABS REPORT

Future Of Work
Cultivating The Next Generation Of Leaders
NEW

Automotive september 23, 2016

Slick GPS Navigator Gives Directions To Moped Riders

This small, round device attaches to a sideview mirror to display maps for safer traveling

Home september 23, 2016

A Clock That Beautifully Manages Your Information Overload

The wall-mounted timekeeper is made to help people maintain focus and stay up to date with their appointments

Arts & Culture september 23, 2016

Performance Piece Blends Dancers Into Folds Of Light

The work provides commentary on the increasing connection between programmed and analog dimensions

No search results found.