Sasaki Foundation Announces Inaugural Design Award Winners


Watertown, MA, October 3, 2018 – The Sasaki Foundation announced today the winning teams for its inaugural Sasaki Foundation Design Awards. The Design Awards are an annual competition to showcase projects that support and drive interdisciplinary innovation and empower our local communities.

Each year, the Sasaki Foundation announces research topics that address current trends and inequities in design. In 2018, its inaugural year, the Foundation focused on Proactive Approaches to Climate Adaptation; New Models for Housing; Innovation in Transit & Access to Mobility Choices; and Creative Community Building.

“We were extremely impressed by the response we received from applicants, our partners, and communities,” says Alexandra Lee, Executive Director. “The Foundation is excited to fund innovative projects focused on bringing new, local solutions to global challenges.”

Applicants proposed projects to win cash awards and office space at the Incubator at Sasaki. In this first year, the Foundation received 140 inquiries and two dozen applications from multi-member teams. The projects represented fifteen organizations, seven teams of individuals, nine Boston communities, two Greater Boston cities, and three Gateway Cities.

“We had a great team of judges, culled from organizations like Harvard, MIT, Microsoft, Northeastern, and others, who evaluated the teams on how equitable, innovative, and impactful their ideas were,” says Mary Anne Ocampo, Chair of Sasaki Foundation’s Board of Trustees. “We are excited to welcome these new teams to the Incubator this fall to tackle projects that will empower underserved communities within Massachusetts.”

The names of the 2018 Design Award winners are:

Charles River Floating Wetlands

A new approach to reduce harmful algal blooms by enhancing zooplankton populations using floating wetlands along the Charles River.

Eastie for Eastie

An effort to promote land pooling, land readjustment, and community land trusts as alternatives to displacement due to rising sea levels and development pressure in East Boston.

G | Code House

A co-living, -learning, and -working community in Roxbury providing young women of color with technology training and work opportunities.

The ECHO Locator

A new digital interface, the ECHOLocator, will provide housing choice voucher holders with customizable information on communities that are both affordable and serve their public transit needs.

Please Touch the Art

A tactile art exhibit in Watertown providing multi-sensory, immersive, tactile experiences for visually impaired community members.