The Urban Risk Lab at MIT develops methods, prototypes and technologies to embed risk reduction and preparedness into the design of cities and regions to increase the resilience of local communities. Operating at the intersection of ecology and infrastructure, rural and urban, research and action; the Urban Risk Lab is an interdisciplinary organization of researchers and designers. With a global network of partners, the Lab is a place to innovate on techniques, processes, and systems to address the complexities of seismic, climatic, and hydrologic risks. We engage in action research through extensive field work and community workshops to focus on the needs of diverse cultures and contexts. We aspire to change the course of current global development trends through a radical shift in education and action to proactively embed preparedness and risk reduction in this rapidly urbanizing world.