Deans' Design Challenge Harvard Deans' Design Challenge

The Deans’ Design Challenge: Urban Life 2030 seeks proposals that envision order of magnitude improvements to the liveability of our cities by 2030.

The world’s urban population is forecasted to grow by about 50% in the next 15 years, inducing a monumental transformation in the lives of our city dwellers. Most of this urbanization will occur in less developed regions, where new population density will compound the effects of existing problems of transportation, safety, food, water, and inequality. And modern cities carry with them inherent challenges for all regions and economies, especially as the pace and scale of resource consumption intensifies.

Dean Mohsen Mostafavi, Harvard Graduate School of Design, and Dean Cherry Murray, Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, call upon Harvard students to apply their creativity to find collaborative, entrepreneurial, and sustainable solutions to best address the urban issues accompanying this population growth.


2014 Design Challenge Finalists

Carewrite is a mobile website that works to empower individuals to better coordinate the healthcare of loved ones.

Cloudcommuting creates the first bike-sharing service that would replace trucks and employees with paid users who would redistribute bikes as needed.

MateriaLEASE offers temporary ownership of building components to help young ventures create better workspaces, while protecting the environment.

Resilient Modular Systems (RMS) - formally CAPA
RMS seeks to be the global leader in innovative building components and sustainable materials in the developing world.

Shipster is a mobile platform that connects deliveries with people heading in similar directions, saving up to 60 percent on shipping costs and providing a more sustainable alternative to current delivery services.

Six Foods
Six Foods uses urban insect farming as an alternative source of protein to soy, whey, and eventually livestock.

To read the Harvard Gazette story about Finalists in this and other Deans' Challenges, click here.

"Urban populations are expected to grow by more than fifty percent in the next two decades creating significant challenges to existing urban systems, infrastructure and quality of life.

Harvard is the ideal place to develop creative solutions to these problems—solutions that can only come from imaginative and entrepreneurial thinking.”

Mohsen Mostafavi, GSD Dean, and co-chair of the Challenge