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Develop new knowledge, methods, and tools that increase understanding of Dubai's physical, digital, natural, and built environments.

The Senseable Dubai Lab (SDL) is the first-ever MIT Senseable City Lab in the Middle East, established in partnership with the Dubai Future Foundation. Its focus is on researching and testing pilot projects for urban planning and managing the rapid growth of cities. Adopting an omni-disciplinary approach, it caters to designers, planners, engineers, physicists, biologists, and social scientists. Drawing upon the expertise of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, SDL explores the relationship between cities, people, and technologies, and investigates how the ubiquity of digital devices and telecommunication networks are impacting urban living. Apply today and join us in our mission to create more diverse and inclusive cities.

Visual AI

MIT has been at the forefront of developing AI models to assess image-based urban data analytics. We use transfer AI learning techniques to detect patterns in new ways of people living the environment.

Big Data Analytics

Evidence-based policy is gaining traction globally. We believe that policy decisions should be informed by objective evidence. In this sense, understanding cities through data are vital.

Sensing Platforms

Data can also be generated by deploying an array of sensors with specific intent. Embedding technology into the urban environment can yield robust and fine-grained data to reveal humanity’s fingerprint.

Cooling the Desert

Sustainable Cooling for a warming planet. Implementing strategies to improve the way we live indoor and outdoor spaces in Dubai.

This will involve a range of proposals, from innovative ways to detect urban and environmental features in real-time to designing new solutions and reconsidering existing ones. By analyzing the digital layer of information and digital traces that we leave in our cities, we can uncover patterns of the natural and built environment.

senseable city lab.

Cooling Path

What is the best seasonal and time-based path for walking in a warming city? Based on your preferences, the map will create a dynamic path that takes into account canopy and building shadows, green and water areas, cooling spots, and indoor accessible paths to shorten your trajectory and provide relief for a few minutes.

senseable city lab.

Food AI

How the food environment affects our diet? The food environment determines our access to foods: whether it is a fresh market, fried foods, or energy dense foods – this has an effect on what we eat. We will explore who is eating what where and when in Dubai.


What should AI eat?

Nov 18, 2023


Unlocking the power of technology, the panel delve into the profound impact of food on our lives. Exploring our food choices and dining locations, we question the influence of urban settings. During the panel we will unravel the intricate relationship between food types and our well-being, while also addressing the critical issue of food waste.

Coming soon ➔


Meet Our Team

MIT Senseable City Lab

Carlo Ratti Director

Martina Mazzarello Senseable Dubai Lab Lead

Dubai Future Foundation

Abdulaziz AlJaziri SDL Governing Board

Khalifa AlQama SDL Governing Board

Sevag Ohannessian SDL Management Team

Current Researchers

Fábio Duarte Principal Research Scientist

Paolo Santi Principal Research Scientist

Guido Camps Visiting Professor

Michele Tufano Visiting PhD Student

Javad Eshtiyagh Research Fellow

Alaa Alradwan Research Fellow

Jianxiu Wen Research Affiliate

Mayar Ariss Visiting Student

Rohit Sanatani Research Assistant

Chada Elalami Visiting Student

Web Design

Jingrong Zhang with MM and FD


We always seek outstanding candidates from a variety of backgrounds besides our specific position openings. We encourage applications from minorities and other under-represented groups. Apply today and join us in our mission of making cities more diverse and inclusive.

Postdoctoral Researcher Decarbonization, Urban Mobility, Urban Heat - Dubai, UAE
Research Fellow Decarbonization, Urban Mobility, Urban Heat - Dubai, UAE
Data Visualization and/or UX/UI Specialist


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