Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab named to 'Fast Company' Best Workplaces for Innovators list

Publication recognizes APL for supporting experimentation, prototyping, and interdisciplinary collaboration

Group of people wearing VR goggles

Image caption: Researchers from the Applied Physics Laboratory take part in an augmented reality/virtual reality expo at APL’s Central Spark facility, where staff members can explore ideas and concepts using state-of-the-art equipment.

Image credit: Ed Whitman/APL

The Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory has been named to the inaugural Fast Company Best Workplaces for Innovators list, released Monday.

The list features 50 workplaces around the world in industries such as biotech, cybersecurity, financial services, and engineering. Organizations joining APL as a Best Workplace for Innovators include Amazon, Genentech, Morgan Stanley, and Procter & Gamble.

Of APL, Fast Company writes:

Associates and fellows at the state-of-the-art research complex have 24/7 access to 3D printing, a VR/AR room, and an electronics workbench; a centralized database keeps researchers abreast of new developments in other labs. Last year, the APL reported 419 new inventions and 30 new patents.

The magazine created the list "to identify and honor companies that are truly dedicated to encouraging innovation at all levels of the organization—making significant investments to create a culture of innovation."

APL's work spans from deep sea to deep space and encompasses complex systems vital to national security and health, including breakthroughs in machine learning and artificial intelligence.

APL's history of solving tough technical problems dates to 1942, when researchers developed a variable timing fuze that revolutionized air defense and helped turn the tide of World War II. Today, APL's work spans from deep sea to deep space and encompasses complex systems vital to national security and health, including breakthroughs in machine learning and artificial intelligence.

"We are honored that this award recognizes our lab-wide culture of experimentation and commitment to collaboration," APL Director Ralph Semmel said. "The lab promotes exploration and bold thinking by all of our staff members—and we have seen this lead to previously unimaginable solutions to a number of the nation's most complex national security, space exploration, and health challenges."

APL has twice previously appeared on Fast Company lists of top innovative companies. It was previously recognized for its breakthrough work on the Parker Solar Probe and for its work on neurally controlled prosthetics.