Accelerating innovative urban solutions

Australia's cities and urban regions are changing fast. Digital disruption, environmental change, and rapid population growth are creating an unprecedented set of challenges that demand new ways of doing things. Business as usual will not be enough. The future resilience and liveability of Australia’s cities depend on our capacity for original solutions that scale with impact.


Why we are unique

We offer a systems view of cities

Australia's cities are complex. As Australia’s national science agency, we're uniquely placed to respond to the challenges driving urban transformation – from climatic and atmospheric changes, new transport and energy technologies, changing population demographics, and new business models.

We draw on multidisciplinary expertise

The Future Cities initiative draws on our depth and breadth of scientific expertise in Land and Water, Agriculture and Food, Data Science, Energy, Health and Biosecurity, Manufacturing, Mineral Resources and Oceans and Atmosphere.

We prepare cities for the future

Australia's cities are highly liveable, but face significant and growing pressures, including growing competition for investment and jobs. We offer a collaborative and evidence-based approach to unlock the benefits of urban sustainability through the application of science and technology across precinct, community and city-wide projects.

We deliver through partnerships

Future Cities partnership models are tailored around the needs of partners and collaborators. We partner with SMEs, emerging and established technology vendors, federal and state government agencies and industry organisations through contract research, technology licensing, research placements and much more.

Responding to 21st century challenges

The 'science of cities' is about creating wider opportunities for experimentation; bringing together multiple stakeholders and sectors, to address urban challenges and foster learning about the effects of urban interventions in real world contexts.


Modelling the future of cities

We are focused on improving data modelling and monitoring frameworks to support future investments in our city infrastructure and services.

Discover our Immersive Environments Lab

Understanding how Australians consume energy

Collaborative marketplace for waste management

Delivering climate ready buildings

We are delivering climate ready buildings and materials to reduce carbon footprints and increase preparedness for future climates.

Building infrastructure and bushfires

Energy-efficient housing

Impact of thermal comfort on residential energy use

Transforming urban infrastructure

We are transforming the way we produce, distribute and manage urban resources to increase infrastructure reliability and performance.

More about our Virtual Power Station

Alternative water supplies for the future

Monitoring the health of engineered structures

Supporting health and wellbeing

We are empowering communities to increase their uptake of novel and effective health solutions to improve quality of life.

Living at home longer

Indoor and outdoor air quality

Want to eat more veggies? There's an app for that

Urban Living Labs

Australia is among one of the most urbanised nations in the world, so what better place to show the world how urbanisation should be done. Urban Living Labs provide an arena for collaboration and a testbed for innovation; to drive urban transitions by going beyond business as usual and demonstrating the potential of alternatives.

Our aim is to create a portfolio of Urban Living Labs across Australia, spanning different climates and urban development contexts, to maximise the opportunities for innovation and learning. We established our first Urban Living Lab at Sydney Science Park in Western Sydney, recently announced plans for a Darwin Living Lab as part of the Darwin City Deal, and are proposing an Urban Living Lab at Ginninderra, Canberra.

To find ways to improve urban living and to foster planning and design for more sustainable and resilient cities, we've taken our research, and the lab, to the people.

More about the 'science of cities' behind Urban Living Labs

Urban Living Lab: Sydney

Sydney Science Park is a 280 hectare mixed use greenfield development in Western Sydney, that is set to become one of the largest centres of research and development in the country. Working in partnership with Celestino, the Sydney Science Park has been confirmed as an 'innovation zone', which is the first step in establishing the site as an Urban Living Lab.

Urban Living Lab: Darwin

Under the Darwin City Deal, we've partnered with the three tiers of government, to coordinate the Darwin Living Lab.

The Urban Living Lab will test the effectiveness of heat mitigation measures delivered as part of the City Deal and develop evidence-based approaches to inform tropical urban design and future development in Darwin.

Urban Living Lab: Ginninderra

Ginninderra is a 701-hectare greenfield site on the northern fringe of Australia's capital, Canberra.

Through innovative partnership and collaborations with industry, government and the community, CSIRO is preparing to transform its agricultural research field station into a sustainable urban development informed by science and innovation.

Read more about Ginninderra

Future Cities

Discover how we are helping to build cities that are fit for the future