April 11, 2013
At its Open House & Ribbon Cutting, NYU’s Center for Urban Science & Progress (CUSP) welcomed Mayor Bloomberg and President John Sexton as it showcased its new Downtown Brooklyn office and announced partnerships with Microsoft and Lutron Electronics.
“The innovative faculty and students at CUSP will set out to tackle urban challenges and bring innovative solutions to a world market, and it’s only appropriate that we begin shaping these ideas in Brooklyn – one of the most dynamic neighborhoods in the world,” said Doctor Steven Koonin, Director of CUSP. “And we could not be more pleased to use today’s event to welcome both Microsoft and Lutron Electronics to the CUSP team. Each brings an expertise in their respective fields that is unmatched. Research collaborations with Microsoft and Lutron present exciting opportunities to advance CUSP’s mission and improve the quality of life of New York residents.”
“NYU CUSP will spin off hundreds of new companies, create thousands of jobs, and generate billions of dollars in economic activity for the city,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “It will drive innovation and lend even more momentum to our booming tech sector – which is creating good-paying jobs for New Yorkers every day. CUSP’s success is vital to the future of our city, and the private sector partners announced today clearly also recognize its value and importance.”
“The Center for Urban Science and Progress is a centerpiece of our efforts to transform New York City into the global capital of innovation for the 21st Century,” said New York City Economic Development Corporation President Seth W. Pinsky. “Not only will CUSP lead to hundreds of new companies, thousands of new jobs, and more than $5 billion in nominal economic activity over the next three decades, the research coming out of the center will also help cities like New York address some of the great urban challenges in the coming decades. We look forward to watching the partnerships announced today with Microsoft and Lutron help realize this potential.”
CUSP’s facilities at MetroTech and its future home at 370 Jay Street will build on NYU’s existing presence in Brooklyn, which includes NYU-Poly, by bringing together global leaders of science, technology, and education while anchoring the next phase of economic development initiatives in the area. CUSP, one of the winning proposals submitted in response to the City’s Applied Sciences NYC initiative, will, at full strength, include 50 researchers and faculty members from universities and private industry, along with more than 400 Masters students and 100 Ph.D. candidates, as well as adjuncts, post-doctoral scholars and support staff.
Features of CUSP’s new office space include:
- 26,000 square feet of space, including offices and workstations for faculty, visiting industrial researchers, administrators, and staff.
- Three easily configured collaborative spaces at the corners of the building providing everyone working at CUSP access to views of the city they are studying.
- Two large visualization labs which will allow researchers to gain insight and understanding of large urban data sets or phenomena that are simulated in large, complex computer models.
- An electronics lab for the design and fabrication of low-cost hardware that collects validated, crowd-sourced urban data.
“I couldn’t be more thrilled that the NYU Center for Urban Science and Progress is part of Brooklyn’s ‘big stage,’” said Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz. “CUSP’s new partnership with Microsoft and Lutron Electronics is nothing short of an innovation ‘trifecta.’ With CUSP arriving at Metro Tech and eventually to 370 Jay Street, we can truly say that NYU begins in Brooklyn!”
As part of its partnership, Microsoft will provide CUSP with Windows Azure computing services to help the Center improve city infrastructure by delivering elastic scale storage and computing services that are quick to deploy and easy to manage. Additionally, researchers from Microsoft Research (MSR), the company’s global research organization comprised of more than 850 researchers who openly collaborate with leading academic, government, and industry researchers to advance the state of the art of computing, will participate in CUSP’s projects and help develop academic materials, internships, and curricula leveraging New York City as a living lab to create a unique data-driven educational program.
“Microsoft is incredibly excited to be able to apply our expertise in big data to some of the most compelling problems in urban computing – from fundamental research questions to practical questions that can impact cities and societies worldwide,” said Jennifer Chayes, managing director of MSR New England and New York City. “We are thrilled to be working with our colleagues at CUSP, the agencies of the great city of New York, and our partners, using machine learning, information retrieval, data visualization and social science approaches to data science, to find new ways to analyze, navigate and protect the privacy of urban data, and to use these to drive new insights and solutions.”
As part of this collaboration with CUSP, Lutron, a technology-centered company which provides energy-saving lighting control innovations, has donated its Quantum® total light management system – which includes Radio Powr Savr™ occupancy sensors, Pico® wireless controls and Sivoia® QS wireless shades – to the CUSP offices. Lutron will work with CUSP to focus on the creation of predictive models and analytics in areas of building lighting and energy management, both of which are critical components to the operation of a city. In the United States alone, Lutron lighting controls have reduced electrical use by 9.2 billion kWh, which has reduced its customers’ electric bills by $1 billion annually.
“The future of our economy is dependent on finding new ways to reduce electricity costs in commercial buildings,” said Russ MacAdam, director, commercial engineering development at Lutron. “We look forward to working with CUSP to advance the area of lighting energy management studies and helping resolve the nation’s energy crisis.”
Both Microsoft Research and Lutron will have the opportunity to nominate employees who are scientific or technical experts in CUSP’s field of study to serve as Visiting Scientists in the pursuit of collaborative research. Additionally, research staff from both companies will teach classes, participate in the submission of joint project funding proposals with CUSP, assist in defining CUSP’s curriculum and projects, and provide summer and internship opportunities for CUSP students when possible.
About New York University’s Center for Urban Science & Progress
CUSP is a university-wide center whose research and education programs are focused on urban informatics. Using NYC as its lab, and building from its home in the NYU Tandon School of Engineering, it integrates and applies NYU strengths in the natural, data, and social sciences to understand and improve cities throughout the world. CUSP offers a one-year MS degree in Applied Urban Science & Informatics. For more news and information on CUSP, please visit http://cusp.nyu.edu. Follow NYU CUSP on Twitter @NYU_CUSP.
About Microsoft Research
Founded in 1991, Microsoft Research is dedicated to conducting both basic and applied research in computer science and software engineering. More than 850 Ph.D. researchers focus on more than 55 areas of computing and openly collaborate with leading academic, government, and industry researchers to advance the state of the art of computing, help fuel the long-term growth of Microsoft and its products, and solve some of the world’s toughest problems through technological innovation. Microsoft Research has expanded over the years to seven countries worldwide and brings together the best minds in computer science to advance a research agenda based on an array of unique talents and interests. Microsoft Research operates in Redmond, WA.; Cambridge, MA.; New York City; Mountain View, CA.; Cambridge, U.K.; Beijing, China; and Bangalore, India; and also conducts research at the Advanced Technology Labs Cairo in Egypt; the Advanced Technology Labs Europe in Aachen, Germany; Advanced Technology Labs in Israel; FUSE Labs in Redmond and Cambridge, U.K.; and the eXtreme Computing Group in Redmond; and Station Q in Santa Barbara, Calif. More information can be found at http://research.microsoft.com.
Founded in 1961, Lutron Electronics is headquartered in Coopersburg, Pennsylvania, in the heart of the Lehigh Valley. From dimmers for the home, to lighting management systems for entire buildings, the company offers more than 17,000 energy-saving products, sold in more than 100 countries around the world. In the US alone, Lutron products save an estimated 10 billion kWh of electricity, or approximately $1 billion in utility costs per year. The company’s early inventions— including the first solid-state dimmer invented by Lutron’s founder, Joel Spira—are now at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History in Washington, DC. More information can be found at www.lutron.com. Quantum, Pico, and Sivoia QS are registered trademarks of Lutron Electronics Co., Inc.