Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Thursday 15th December, 2022 launched the Senseable Lagos Lab, the first MIT Senseable City research facility in Africa at Isimi Lagos, Epe.
The initiative which is sponsored by Nigeria’s leading residential real estate company, LandWey Investment Ltd, in partnership with the team members of MIT Senseable City Lab and the Lagos State Government was officially launched at the maiden edition of the Lagos Future City Week organized by LandWey.
Speaking at the epoch-making ceremony, Governor Sanwo-Olu who was represented by his Special Adviser on SDGs and Investment, Solape Hammond, said: “I wholeheartedly commend Landwey Investment for attracting this partnership. The Senseable Lagos Lab launch is a very exciting project for us as it follows our climate adaptation and sustainable resilience plan for Lagos. We have identified many projects which will help us address this including; waste management, flood risk, green building and some other challenges. Thus, it is exciting to see the fruition of this partnership as it would help us address some if not all of these challenges.”
While commenting on what the partnership means for education, Hammond said: “We have recently established the University of Science and Technology which will focus on churning out those graduates who will be providing solutions through science and technology. This makes it an apt time to have this partnership as Lagos is well equipped with several universities for the Senseable City Lab and Isimi Tech Valley to work with across the state.” She remarked.
At the event, the Co-Founder and Director, MIT Senseable City Labs, Carlo Ratti, walked the audience through the vision of the research initiative focusing on some of the global solutions developed by the facility through its meticulous research.
“We are elated about this partnership as it is our first ever in Africa. Building sustainable cities around the world has helped us realize the peculiarity of each city. Each one has its own distinct problem; to which we use data to provide solutions. We are curious to possibly discover Lagos’ environmental challenges and equally excited to proffer solutions using data,” Ratti noted.
With an overall goal of anticipating future trends, the Senseable Lagos Lab will bring together researchers from many academic disciplines to conduct real time work on groundbreaking ideas and innovative real-world demonstrations in Lagos state. Work from MIT Senseable City Lab has been exhibited in leading venues including the Venice Biennale, the Design Museum Barcelona, the Canadian Centre for Architecture and the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York. Among many awards are TIME Magazine's Best Invention of the Year in 2007 (Digital water Pavilion) and 2014 (Copenhagen Wheel).
Committed to promoting the adoption of sustainable living in Nigeria and by extension, Africa, the relationship between Isimi Tech Valley and MIT Senseable City Lab hopes to provide data-led long-term solutions to the ever-growing Megacity which will in turn encourage more investment.