Dr. Ryan C.C. Chin is the managing director of the City Science Initiative at the MIT Media Lab. He conducts research on disruptive urban systems in the areas of urban mobility, live/work, building-integrated agriculture, and big data analytics. He is creating autonomous Mobility-on-Demand (MoD) Systems – a network of self-driving, shared-use, lightweight electric vehicles (EVs) for cities. He also developed MoD EVs including the GreenWheel, RoboScooter, Persuasive Electric Vehicle, and the CityCar – a foldable, electric, two-passenger vehicle. The CityCar is designed to meet European Union regulations for roadworthy urban EVs. Time magazine named CityCar the “Automotive Invention of the Year” in 2007. Research on MoD systems led to the MIT Press publication of Reinventing the Automobile: Personal Urban Mobility for the 21st Century by Mitchell, Borroni-Bird, and Burns in 2010.
Chin consults and advises industry and government agencies in the areas of smart cities, mass customization, and sustainable urban systems. He frequently travels as a speaker and panelist at conferences like TEDx, MIT EmTech, and Smart City Expo. He also speaks at general audience events upon request. His op-ed articles have been featured in publications like the Guardian and BBC. His work has been exhibited at the Cooper Hewitt, Venice Bienalle, MIT, Harvard, and the London Science Museum.
Chin has won awards for his research including the Katerva Award for Transportation (2014) and the 100K Buckminster Fuller Challenge (2009). Esquire magazine named him as one of the “Best and Brightest Innovators” under the age of 35 in 2006. He received an M. Arch (2000) in Architecture and a Ph.D. (2012) and M.S. (2004) in Media Arts and Sciences, all from MIT. He earned both his B.C.E. and B.S.Arch from the Catholic University of America (1997).