In an academic environment given to increasing specialization, David Edwards defies the trend. His training is in chemical engineering, his faculty position at Harvard is in biomedical engineering, and his passion is incubating innovation. To achieve this, he has set up two labs that fuse both creativity and empiricism. He calls this blend “artscience.”

His labs have produced an installation curated by an artist and a psychologist that depicts fear in an age of terrorist. A chef and a scientist combined to produce breathable chocolate, which is now marketed commercially.

In a book about these experiences, Edwards advocates for learning through creativity. A scientific lab infused with art is less likely to shoot down unorthodox ideas. Together, they lead to concrete breakthroughs.


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