Rate this response:
Considering that the "Institute is committed to generating, disseminating, and preserving knowledge, and to working with others to bring this knowledge to bear on the world's great challenges," what about creating interdisciplinary academic programs focused on specific goals for improving the world? For example, MIT could develop a program focused on a specific goal in support of reducing global hunger. The program could be mostly practical and be tied to an array of MIT research centers. I could see opportunities for partnerships with and funding from UN organizations, NGOs, and perhaps corporate donors. The program could be mostly virtual, in order to leverage the perspectives of individuals from around the globe, and be very much an exercise in learning through doing. Perhaps it could be run through edX. The program itself would work toward the specific goal and over time would produce graduates with the knowledge and impetus to extend their work beyond MIT.