Engage Your City

Through our recent merger with CEOs for Cities, we are the largest and most dynamic city learning network in the country with a commitment to driving inclusive innovation in our communities. We believe that collaboration of cross-sector, cross-generation talent within and between cities and regions drives success. When your city joins Forward Cities, you’re joining an all-star network of practitioners, innovators, and decision-makers committed to creating a more resilient economy for all.

Why should your city join:


Connect with peers from more than 30 member cities similarly committed to driving economic growth and shared prosperity.
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Through our national conferences, continuing education opportunities, toolkits, case studies, and stories from the field we strive to keep you on the leading edge of innovative practice.
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This is hard work and you’re not on your own. Through our capacity building efforts, partnerships, and tested methods, we walk alongside our member cities to answer questions, be a resource, and help put ideas into action.
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1+1 = 3. That’s our approach to everything. We are in this together and constantly connect dots across our network to increase opportunities for shared learning and collaboration.
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Inclusive innovation means that everyone can and should participate in the new economy. Defining outcomes, agreeing on strategies to achieve them, measuring the results, and learning from the process is what we our community is all about.
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Forward Cities’ most powerful asset is our city learning network. Our national cross-sector, cross-generation network is made up of
 practitioners and policy-makers dedicated to accelerating inclusive innovation in their local communities and exploring opportunities for collaboration between cities. By joining, your city will have an opportunity to connect with other city leaders in our network, share ideas, and access capacity building tools and resources.

NATIONAL Conferences

When your city joins, you will get a complimentary or discounted rates to attend our fall national conference and be invited to a members-only spring workshop. These conferences help Forward Cities members ditch the status quo. We get hands-on, interactive, practical, and very real.

Capacity Building

By joining, cities also have access to a host of capacity building tools and resources. This includes eligibility to apply for funding support and training for a two-year Inclusive Innovation Fellow as well as technical assistance to form a local Innovation Council, map your local inclusive innovation economy, develop a strategic plan, and invest implementation grants through our Community Innovation Accelerator.

Continuing Education

Hands-on workshops, an invitation to a Quarterly Trends webinars and regular doses of recommended readings keep Forward Cities members sharp on scalable solutions and best practices for making progress in their cities.

Membership Benefits

The membership levels for a city per year are as follows:

Individuals and organizations can also register for the national convening for $550/ individual.
We also encourage regional clusters of cities to join Forward Cities – particularly a metro “hub” and surrounding micropolitan “spokes.” If your region is interested in exploring this opportunity and the associated discounts, please contact us.

The membership levels for a city per year are as follows:


Mayor’s Advisory InvitationYN
First selection preferences for city visitsYN
Up to 20 hours of consulting support with our national team including research, media/communications, policy support, and capacity buildingYN
Invitations to curated site visits to partner citiesYY
Forward Cities Acceleration Eligibility with funding and supportYY
Innovation Fellow Eligibility with funding & supportYY
One-time passes to
Spring OR Fall Conference (TOTAL)
Y *Y *
Eligibility to host convening/ workshop/ site visitYY
Invited to Quarterly Trends WebinarYY
Access to Members DirectoryYY

*The leadership level includes 10 passes
*The community level includes 5 passes

From Our Members

What do you like the most about Forward Cities?

“…energy, passion, ideas for building sustainable and equitable cities”
“Articles about what other cities are doing to address challenges. Being able to ask other members for advice and insights.”
“Conferences are amazing-great presenters, fabulous tours, inspirational people from across the country.”
“Networking and learning from other Cities”
“Conferences are amazing-great presenters, fabulous tours, inspirational people from across the country.”
“Learning about other cities from people that know cities.”
“The cluster workshops and national meetings — as a way to network and experience other communities, and emerging and best practices.”
“Exposure to new ideas and creative thinking from other cities.”
“Opportunity to bring cross sector of Indy civic leaders together to see another city and its assets (working and struggling) in the context of leading thought leaders we could never afford to tackle alone. The cross-City opportunity of those discussions accelerate local solutions.”

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