Local leaders tackling similar challenges have a lot to learn from each other. Creating opportunities for cities to make and sustain these connections is a key component of the National Resource Network’s approach to city partnership.
The Network‘s three national peer convenings: a smaller, inaugural event in Chattanooga (2014) that also helped establish the trajectory of the Network’s peer activity, and two larger convenings – in Miami (2015) and New Orleans (2016) – that each brought together more than 100 representatives from 30-50 cities. The last two convenings have focused on a mix of participant-led educational sessions, formal and informal networking, and city tours. Review the agendas for the 2015 and 2016 convenings online.
The Network has facilitated the development of two peer-generated resources for city leaders. These guides represent an innovative model for intercity collaboration and peer learning. While federal agencies, nonprofits, foundations, and private interests have produced much information on digital inclusion, a resource guide produced by a consortium of city leaders for the benefit of cities nationwide is unprecedented. The perspectives of the authors and the target audience are completely in alignment, which allows for greater sensitivity to the financial, social, and political realities that will impact communities seeking to launch new initiatives.
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