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August 31st, 2010
Q: The strategic plan calls for new fields of study so students can interact and influence the world of 2035. What will these new fields look like?
Georgia Tech President G.P. "Bud" Peterson: If I asked you 10 or 15 years ago what the new or emerging areas were for the future, you would say information technology, biotechnology and nanotechnology. Those will continue to be very important. What we are trying to do is identify other areas. One of those areas is future media, the idea of how media technology and strategies impact the way we live our lives. Energy and sustainability are already important and will be increasingly important as we go forward. So will the availability of clean water around the world.
Q: What will be the key areas of research over the next 25 years?
Peterson: Some of the specifics areas are energy, water and future media. We want to create an "Experimental College" to give students more flexibility. New discoveries will be made at the intersections of existing disciplines. We need to provide them with flexibility so they can study these new areas. Ten or 15 years ago computer science and biology came together and then physics and engineering came together and created nanotechnology. Now nanotechnology and biotechnology are coming together.
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