MIT Connection Science Living Labs


With our novel “Living Labs” paradigm for research in the field, MIT Connection Science brings together interdisciplinary experts to develop, deploy, and test - in actual living environments - new technologies and strategies built on safe, trusted, data sharing.

A key issue today is that data is siloed, whether it's personal data, data inside an organization, or data sharing across different organizations. Data discovery and integration is difficult and presents complex technical, organizational and policy challenges. A Living Lab allows MIT to be a microcosm for many big data efforts whether in government or in industry. One of our goals is to work with organizations in opening up repositories of information that contain the data needed to discover valuable new insights about important topics such as inclusive finance and health services, innovation, learning and sustainability. MIT is well positioned to take a leadership role in demonstrating not only how organizations can leverage data in the future, but how we collect, manage, and use personal information, from setting appropriate privacy policies to demonstrating AI systems that can implement it in practice.

Current MIT Living Labs:

  • Adelaide, South AustraliaAn alliance of banking, telecom, health, and transportation industries working through the government funded Lot 14 incubator.

  • Australia and Mexico (in progress) - The Atlas of Opportunity works to better understand how social interaction and economic behavior impact future outcomes of communities across South Australia.

  • Colombia: Created an open data resource to better manage challenges of COVID-19 and Venezuelan refugee crisis 

  • Switzerland - Helping to deploy blockchain and advanced data systems (such as the Swiss Trust Chain) to improve the finance and trade systems

Previous MIT Living Labs:

  • Israel: The Great Ashdod Initiative for Public Smart Transportation - Helped design a national testbed for transportation innovation

  • Beijing: Created an open data resource to effectively promote innovation

  • Turkey: Created on open-source data resource to better stimulate more inclusive financial growth and help manage the Syrian refugee c