Task Force 2021 enters next phase

April 12, 2021
Chair of the Faculty, 2019–2021 | Sanjay Sarma, Vice President for Open Learning, 2016–2022 |

To the members of the MIT community:

We are pleased to share with you the news that Task Force 2021 and Beyond is entering its next phase.

President Reif launched the task force last May to develop “the blueprints for building a better MIT” – an Institute positioned optimally for the post-Covid world. In December, we invited the community to comment on the over 50 ideas that emerged from the creative, insightful, and diligent efforts of nearly 200 faculty, staff, and students who served on the task force in “phase 1” last year. We would like to thank all who participated in this first phase, including our Student Advisory Group and Alumni Advisory Group.

We have spent the past three months developing a plan and a structure to advance these ideas. Today we launch the second phase of Task Force 2021 and Beyond, focused on refining these ideas and planning their implementation. At the heart of this work will be 16 Refinement and Implementation Committees (RICs), each charged with developing specific and concrete proposals, and defining implementation plans for those proposals.

These RICs are smaller than the working groups that worked last fall to generate the initial ideas. Each RIC includes members from those groups who are well-versed in the earlier consideration of the ideas, and also includes members whose roles at MIT will involve them in the implementation of the ideas. The membership of the RICs can be found here. We are grateful for the participation of these colleagues, especially those who have been actively involved in the work of the task force since last summer.

The task force website has been updated to include descriptions of these RICs and an opportunity for community input on their work. We welcome your feedback, and appreciate your engagement over the past 11 months — whether in the form of idea bank submissions, participation in community forums, or engagement in other discussions.

We are confident that all of this guidance from across our community will help position the Institute for a bright future once we emerge from the long shadow of Covid-19.


Rick Danheiser, Chair of the Faculty
Sanjay Sarma, Vice President for Open Learning