Rafi Rich appointed as the co-Executive Director of the Jerusalem University Centre for Urban Innovation 1/4/2022
Rafi Rich was hired by Hebrew University in Jerusalem, to co-direct the Centre for Urban Innovation (part time) focused on promoting multidisciplinary applied research focused on the effects and benefits of innovative technologies, data and processes, on welfare, sustainability, governance and inclusive growth in cities in Israel and around the world.
The current acts through an integration between deep research, teaching, and localized impact working with municipalities, governmental bodies & tech partners.
R.Rich will still act as the CEO of SUITS.
Rafi Rich appointed as an evaluator for the
EU's 100 Climate neutral and Smart Cities Mission 1/3/2022
Rafi Rich was hired by the European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency (CINEA) independent evaluator for the 100 climate neutral & smart city mission of the EU. aimed at ensuring that at least 100 cities and regions will act as experimentation & innovation hubs, to put all European cities in a position to become climate-neutral by 2050.
SUITS selected by the 'Or' Organization to create an innovative national plan for sustainable & community led urban growth in the Negev & Galil Regions in Israel 08/12/2021
SUITS was hired by the Or organization to develop the urban plan and regional context for the Israel 2048 plan, aimed at strengthening secondary cities and regional metropolises towards a sustainable urban & regional growth until 2048. the plan includes, new urban scales & typologies, new regional and local policies aimed at strengthening political & economic decentralization activities for all. the plan also introduces data led policies to improve accountability and validity of these new tools.
SUITS selected to develop the 'urban tech & innovation for elders' playbook for Israel's Ministry of Housing 20/9/2021
SUITS was hired to create a national playbook for integration of new urban solutions and urban technology to improve the wellbeing and paticipation of elders in urban life.
This important playbook focuses on creating policies and tools to enable implementation of improves solutions within the neighborhood scale- including streets, public services, commerce, skills & Jobs, and residential complexes.
SUITS selected to create a strategic smart & sustainable plan for the renewal of the Netanya Metropolitan Business Park 10/1/2021
SUITS was hired to create a roadmap and strategic plan for the renewal & growth of Netanya City's business park, sized over 5000 dunams (1285 acres), boasting companies such as CISCO, ELBIT, SIEMENS, IKEA, OUTBRAIN, EBAY, and others.
The plan includes strategies and actions to answer local stresses & opportunities, as well as aiming at answering to 21-century disruptions to offices and businesses, and the effects of the COVID19 pandemic, in 5 main fields: (a) governance & connectivity; (b) urban innovation; (c) social & financial capital; (d) walkability & mobility; and (e) sustainability, waste & infrastructure
SUITS were chosen to design Israel's first Smart Agrotech park 01/12/2020
SUITS was hired to consult a planned industrial zone, resulting in a complete redesign from a heavy industrial zone in central Israel that included car-only access, unsustainable businesses & covering of an existing stream- to a smart & sustainable plan, including smart water-sensitive design, rehabilitation of the river, utilization of solar-based district cooling, and an agrotech-based design to enable a full ecosystem of companies, beta sites, and IOT based management system for mobility, access, agriculture, services & utilities. The project is part of a regional smart & sustainable strategy led by SUITS and has been endorsed by the ministries of agriculture, economy & transportation, with execution to commence in the following months
Securing the Future of Mobility for Post Pandemic World
SUITS's Rafi Rich was invited to deliver a keynote in the Future World Forum about the new normal focused on mobility supply and demand and urban accessibility to services. amenities and work opportunities, while also discussing the difference between industrial innovation and urban innovation and the difference between the real impact of guerilla deployment ("try now ask for forgiveness later") and policy-based impactful innovation.
for a recording of the online lecture - click on the image to the left
The call for Impact & data-based Standards towards Building Back Better
SUITS's Rafi Rich was invited to deliver a talk about the need for revised smart & sustainable standards to enable flexibility, adaptability, and localized challenge-based processes and solutions.
the talk was part of a GFHS (global forum on human settlements) annual high level event, partnered with WMO, ITU, ICS, IUCN, UNDP, and UNEP.
a Municipal Playbook for the deployment of EVs in city streets
SUITS's Rafi Rich to co-authored the Israeli Municipal Playbook for Private EV charging & parking on public curbsides.
the playbook includes technical, statuary and strategic guidelines for promoting urban electrical vehicles in urban streets
to download a copy (in Hebrew) click on the image
SUITS to Assist Tel Aviv in creating innovation based- post-Covid19 urban strategies
SUITS was chosen to assist Tel Aviv's Strategies team to create urban scenarios, and action plans to enable growth and wellbeing for the city under the impact of the pandemic and the following economic recession, with a focus on real estate, tourism, data, and technology. governance and access to services
SUIT'S led 'Sea Quarter' in Hadera, Israel's leading Smart & Sustainable Neighborhood to represent Israel at the World Urban Forum 2020 20/1/2020
Israeli Ministry of Housing chose the 'Sea Quarter' as Israel's urban innovation showpiece at the World Urban Forum in Abu Dhabi. This unique & innovative Master Plan includes an intensive mixed-use development of 10,000 units in multi-residential complexes, hospitality, offices, retail & public buildings, focused on creating a sustainable synergy between the built environment, natural habitat & the future community through flexible urban planning tools and integration of localized infrastructure & data-based local management systems.
Future Proofing Cities – Keynote at the Sustainable city and International Green City Model workshop, Qingdao, China
Rafi was invited to talk at a Chinese workshop in the beautiful city of Qingdao, organized by the municipality and IGMC. Rafi spoke about trust, planning, and stakeholder collaboration in a smart & sustainable city, explaining how this may be successful (or may fail), explained and presented in our projects and processes
Pafos as the Regional Innovation Hub
SUITS developed the urban innovation roadmap for Pafos, Cyprus
The Municipality of Pafos has invited SUITS to create a new framework for a new economic pillar for its city, by proposing a unifying thesis towards the re-creation of Pafos as the leading Innovation ecosystem in Cyprus and the to-go-place to study how to promote creativity, innovation and sustainable economy for a small-mid size city.
The document included: identification of the unique factors in Pafos making the city attractive for innovation; What fields of innovation should be applied to the city, and how and where should innovation occur within the city and how will it impact the city’s economy, experience and sustainability
Blockchain, Data and the City- a keynote at the UN Smart & Sustainable city conference, Addis Abeba 4/9/2019
Rafi was invited to speak at the UN initiated conference at the UN campus in Addis Abeba, Ethiopia, The keynote and the following discussion was about the role, dangers and opportunities of distributed ledgers, self-governance and data-based management of urban communities. SUITS believes that current application knowledge and regulation may reduce the potential of inclusive development within the cities, as they may seclude communities and areas, due to the distribution of data and reduction of privacy. while this may create trust and better business ecosystems, we believe that communities and regulations should be co-developed to ensure the opportunities without the risks.
SUiTS to develop the National Smart City Masterplan for Angola
the Angolan government has decided to sign an MOU with SUiTS to develop a smart city masterplan for the country and the capital Luanda. The plan will include mapping local challenges, linking local and international opportunities, and creating a roadmap that will include policies, training, community engagement and implementation of synrgetic projects.
SUiTS selected to prepare the smart city road map and action plan for Holon Municipality, Israel
the city of Holon, a mid-size city just outside of Tel Aviv, branded as Israel's ‘children’s city’ selected SUiTS to develop the smart city road map and to create a synergy between the municipal strategic plan and urban innovation.
the plan will include strategies in 6 themes: planning & the public realm, economic development, Education, Youth and community, municipal services & digital transformation. one of the main aspects would be enabling a"city-for-all"
Keynote - The Shared Economy and the role of city planners in creating and managing smarter cities
Rafi Rich, gave a keynote on urban innovation and the shared economy and the important role of municipal city planners in answering to the huge complexities of managing cities in an era of uncertainty. the lecture was in front of Israel's leading city planners and municipal planning teams in and was later on transformed into an article in Israel's "local authorities" magazine (link below to thearticle in Hebrew)
Rafi Rich Chosen as Urban Advisor to the prestigious Maoz Leadership Fellowship in Boston and Israel
Rafi Rich was appointed Innovation Advisor to the distinguished Maoz fellowship for leaders in local authorities. The unique program includes training and networking for leaders from Arabs & Jews from Ultra-orthodox, modern orthodox and secular backgrounds. at the end of the one-year program, the group spends two weeks in the Boston area, including one week at Harvard Business School
photo: dialogue with the police chief of Lawrence, MA about trust, governance, and service innovation
SUITS to lead Smart & Sustainable masterplanning for Ofakim Municipality
SUiTS has won the Tender to lead the municipal strategies for Smart & Sustainable solutions as part of the masterplans aimed at tripling the size of the southern town of Ofakim Town.
the multi-million plans to be executed over the next few years will include the creation of an innovation district, shared economy policies, local energy & water management & shared Autonomous vehicle strategies linking the old & new quarters
Smart City & Urban Innovation Training for Pafos, Cyprus Leadership
SUiTS & IDC International Training Unit has led a unique 5-week Smart City & urban Innovation workshop for city officials of the municipality of Pafos led by the Mayor Phedon Phedonos. The training is the first stage of the citywide smart city municipal activity, and included a critical study of the current smart city trends, lean innovation training and a urban innovation workshop, in which 4 teams created innovative solutions for local challenges
SUITS was chosen to be the urban innovation consultant for the economic plan for Arab neighborhoods of Eastern Jerusalem
the Eastern Jerusalem Economic cooperation has chosen SUiTS as the urban innovation consultant for an ambitious strategic plan to overcome challenges and barrier for sustainable economic growth in the Arab Communities of Eastern Jerusalem. among the strategies proposed by SUiTS are data-based commerce policies, mobile municipal services, innovative hybrid commerce strategies, dynamic mobility & localized resources & infrastructure
Rafi Rich Interviewed on our vision for smart cities (and what went wrong with current smart city trends)
honored to be on the front page of The weekend edition of the Marker, Israel's leading financial magazine, speaking about the flaws of existing smart city models, based on fast-track gains and not of real value to the cities and their communities. we spoke about how robust strategies and inclusive offerings may change the trend for the better
press on the image for a link to the article (in hebrew)- for more info please contact
Launching of the IDC Israel Smart & Sustainable City Rating System- powered by SUITS
the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya launched the Israel Smart & Sustainable City Rating System to examine the journeys made by Israeli cities, examining cities in four main fields: strategy, data-based planning & Management, Infrastructure & Services & innovation & economy. the rating system examined how the planned and implemented the strategies, and how they relate to the UN's SDG.
The unique standard and related handbook were designed and led by SUiTS
for more information on the rating tool and how it can be relevant for your cities & countries please contact us
Meeting business partners and clients at the Israel Tanzania Business forum
SUITS was among the business leaders invited to participate in the Israel-Tanzania Business Forum in Dar Esalam, discussing future projects with entrepreneurs, cities and governmental officials.
Completing our East African Tour with 5 municipal agreements
completing a very successful & comprehensive East African tour, including 5 flights, 2 ferries, 1500 km by car, 11 cities, 20 meetings, and 5 crates of Stony Tangawizi. the highlight was signing of innovation agreements with 5 cities & Counties- two in Kenya, two in Uganda and one in Tanzania . looking forward to the future
(in the photo: Rafi Rich & Shirley Ben-Dak of SUiTS, with Mayor Kayanja of Entebbe, Ismail Semyalo, the secretary General of LVRLACC and the LVRLACC Team)
SUiTS & KONZA- Kenya's new Smart City - Sign an Urban innovation MOU
Kenya’s first planned smart and sustainable city located just 60 km south of Nairobi, has signed on Friday, in the presence of Israel’s Ambassador to Kenya, Noah Gal Gendler, a strategic MOU with Israeli company Smarter Urban & IT Strategies Ltd. (S.U.iT.S), a smart city and urban-tech integrator.
This MOU positions SUiTS as an innovation partner in the experimentation and implementation of Israeli technologies and solutions, and in promoting Konza Technopolis as a central global focal point in innovation, smart urban policies and planning, and sustainable economic development and green infrastructure. (for more info, press on the photo)
The future of cities is shared- lecture at the Personal Democracy Forum in Kyev
Rafi Rich giving a lecture at the Personal Democracy Forum in Kyiv: "the future of cities is shared"