The MIT D-Lab mission is pursued through our academics program of more than 20 MIT classes and student research and fieldwork opportunities; our research groups spanning a variety of sectors and approaches; and a group of participatory innovation programs we call innovation practice.

Programs & Opportunities

Classes: D-Lab offers more than 20 classes in design, engineering, manufacturing, and social science and business/management topics. In D-Lab classes, students acquire competency in the participatory design process, understand and apply principles of engineering and design, engage in hands-on shop work, learn to think critically about theories of development, and obtain meaningful experiences with community partners. Through hands-on projects in real-world settings, D-Lab students make a difference in the lives of people living in poverty.

Research: MIT D-Lab’s research groups include Biomass Fuels & Cookstoves, Evaporative Cooling, Water Filtration, Local Innovation and Development, and Lean Research. D-Lab is also home to CITE, a USAID-funded research initiative that covers a brough range of global development topics such as digital financial including, internet of things for smallholder agriculture, local innovation, and machine learning.

Innovation Practice: The MIT D-Lab Innovation Practice team facilitates inclusive innovation processes to build better products and services, more equitable value chains, more dynamic local innovation ecosystems, and more resilient communities. Programs include Humanitarian Innovation, Inclusive Regional Economies, and the D-Lab Scale-Ups Fellowship. To support these programs, the group facilitates dynamic workshops in Creative Capacity Building, Co-Design, and Innovation & Entrepreneurship Ecosystems.

Professional and Online Education: D-Lab currently offers two MIT Professional Education courses, Inclusive Innovation: Designing for a Better Worldand Applied Inclusive Business: Scaling Technology in Low-Income Markets, as well as an online edX course, Lean Research Skills for Conducting Interviews.

Workshop: The D-Lab Workshop, the heart and soul of D-Lab, is a place for D-Lab students, fellows, innovators-in-residence, and others to bring technologies for the developing world to life. The workshop includes a large collection of hand and power tools, steel fabrication and welding tools, an open shop with multiple workbenches, and a dedicated wood shop and long-term projects room.

Contact MIT D-Lab at d-lab-info@mit.edu.