Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Aspen Institute Announce New Speakers and Programming for Bloomberg CityLab 2023 in Washington, D.C.

With cities at an inflection point, the tenth CityLab October 18 – 20 will convene more than 500 mayors, policymakers, urban innovators, business leaders, cultural experts, and creatives to share and explore scalable solutions

New featured speakers and participants include Governor Wes Moore, Ravi Agrawal, Claude Borna, Jerusalem Demsas, Diana Rodríguez Franco, Sascha Haselmayer, Brandon Hill, Jeff Goodell, Eleni Myrivili, Edgar Pieterse, Richard Trent, and mayors and city officials from over 200 cities spanning 40 countries and six continents across the globe  

Programming includes largest-ever Mayors Innovation Studio, focused on accelerating the usage of generative artificial intelligence to improve public services, and a Special Infrastructure and Chief Innovators Studio to unleash new approaches for implementing once-in-a-generation funding for communities

New York, NY & Washington, D.C. – Today, Bloomberg CityLab, the preeminent global cities summit organized by Bloomberg Philanthropies in partnership with the Aspen Institute, announced new speakers, programming, and participants for its tenth event in Washington, D.C., October 18 to October 20, 2023.

Cities are facing an era of increasingly intractable issues – from leading their communities through rapid urbanization to confronting emerging technologies to reinvigorating economic development to solving for housing affordability. Bloomberg CityLab 2023, against the historic backdrop of Washington, D.C., will convene more than 500 mayors and leading urban and civic leaders, from policymakers to creatives. Together they will share and explore new ideas and urban interventions that are being pressure-tested in the present and will impact the future of cities – where more than half the world’s population lives.

New speakers include:

  • Mayor Muriel Bowser of Washington, D.C., Mayor Juhana Vartiainen of Helsinki, Finland, Mayor Dagur B. Eggertsson of Reykjavik, Iceland, Mayor Oliver Coppard of South Yorkshire, England, and Susan Aitken, Leader of Glasgow City Council, Scotland
  • Ravi Agrawal, Editor in Chief, Foreign Policy
  • Claude Borna, Managing Director and Chief Innovation Officer, Sèmè City Development Agency
  • Anita Cozart, Director of the D.C. Office of Planning, City of Washington, D.C.
  • Jerusalem Demsas, Staff Writer, The Atlantic
  • Nicole Flatow, Managing Editor, Bloomberg CityLab
  • Diana Rodríguez Franco, Secretary for Women’s Affairs, City of Bogotá, Colombia
  • Sascha Haselmayer, author, The Slow Lane and Senior Leader at Ashoka: Innovators for the Public
  • Brandon Hill, Artist and Co-Founder, No Kings Collective
  • Davion Hodges, Representative of the Baltimore Squeegee Leadership Team
  • Kayleigh Bryant-Greenwell, Arts Lead, the Aspen Institute
  • Jeff Goodell, author, The Heat Will Kill You First: Life and Death on a Scorched Planet
  • Governor Wes Moore of Maryland
  • Eleni Myrivili, Global Chief Heat Officer, UN Habitat and Senior Advisor for Resilience and Sustainability, the Arsht Rock Resilience
  • Faith Leach, Chief Administration Officer, City of Baltimore, Maryland
  • Edgar Pieterse, Director, African Centre for Cities at the University of Cape Town
  • Richard Trent, Executive Director, Friends of Anacostia Park
  • Justin Worland, Senior Correspondent, TIME

Drawing on a decade of data, experiments, and initiatives pioneered by city leaders from around the world, programming will include panel discussions, one-on-one interviews, interactive breakout sessions, artistic performances, excursions to unique destinations across Washington, D.C., and key events for mayors and local officials, including:

  • The largest-ever Mayors Innovation Studio will convene more than 100 mayors who will receive tools to accelerate the usage of generative artificial intelligence to improve public services, hosted at the new Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg Center at 555 Pennsylvania Avenue.
  • A Special Infrastructure and Chief Innovators Studio will bring pioneering data, innovation, and infrastructure leaders together to unleash new approaches for planning and implementing once-in-a-generation infrastructure funding for their communities.
  • Excursions, allowing participants to connect Bloomberg CityLab learnings to place, include explorations of: the vibrancy of street art through a mural tour of NoMa and Union Market, a deep dive of green stormwater infrastructure in Franklin Park and the city’s award-winning RiverSmart program that reduces pollutants in the Chesapeake Bay, the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge Project and Anacostia Riverwalk Trail by bike, and the hidden history and community significance of the city’s alleyways.

Additional topics that will be addressed include:

  • Advancing economic equality and environmental justice
  • Transforming streets and mobility options that put residents first
  • Building newfound community connections within and across cities
  • Tackling homelessness while expanding access to quality, affordable housing
  • Solving for sweeping, societal challenges such as climate change, public health and mental health care services

Members of the media are invited to register to attend. Media credentials must be arranged in advance. For more information, please contact or

Among those confirmed to attend are the mayors (or officials of equivalent position) of Adama, Ethiopia; Banjul, Gambia; Bratislava, Slovakia; Butuan City, Philippines; Elad, Israel; Freetown, Sierra Leone; Gezer Regional Council, Israel; Glasgow, Scotland; Helsinki, Finland; Kitchener, Canada; Kumasi, Ghana; Lusaka, Zambia; Masaka, Uganda; Montevideo, Uruguay; Monterrey, Mexico; Nansana, Uganda; Renca, Chile; Regina, Canada; Reykjavik, Iceland; San Pedro Garza García, Mexico; Skopje, North Macedonia; South Yorkshire, England; Tirana, Albania; and Turku, Finland.

From the United States, this includes the mayors (or officials of equivalent position) of Allentown, Pennsylvania; Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Birmingham, Alabama; Charleston, South Carolina; Chattanooga, Tennessee; Dubuque, Iowa; Durham, North Carolina; Elizabeth, New Jersey; Fort Collins, Colorado; Green Bay, Wisconsin; Hampton, Virginia; Highland Park, Illinois; Huntington, West Virginia; Jackson, Mississippi; Kansas City, Kansas; Knoxville, Tennessee; Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Lansing, Michigan; Lincoln, Nebraska; Miami-Dade County, Florida; New Bedford, Massachusetts; New Orleans, Louisiana; Newark, New Jersey; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; Paterson, New Jersey; Providence, Rhode Island; Rochester, Minnesota; Sacramento, California; San Bernadino, California; San Francisco, California; Santa Fe, New Mexico; Scottsdale, Arizona; Scranton, Pennsylvania; St. Louis, Missouri; St. Petersburg, Florida; Tacoma, Washington; Tulsa, Oklahoma; Vancouver, Washington; Washington, D.C.; West Palm Beach, Florida; and Youngstown, Ohio.

Previously announced speakers include Michael R. Bloomberg, 108th mayor of New York City, Founder of Bloomberg LP and Bloomberg Philanthropies; Vishaan Chakrabarti, Founder and Creative Director of Practice for Architecture and Urbanism | PAU, where he leads the firm’s growing global portfolio of cultural, institutional, and public projects; Dacher Keltner, author, The New Science of Awe; Scott Kratz, Senior Vice President of 11th Street Bridge Park; Mitch Landrieu, White House Senior Advisor and Infrastructure Coordinator, former mayor of New Orleans, Louisiana; Anthony Smith, Executive Director of Cities United; and Matthew Thompson, editor of Headway, an initiative from The New York Times. Additional speakers will be announced and posted on the website in the weeks to come.

“As cities man the frontlines of the most pressing problems facing the planet, the tenth Bloomberg CityLab will bring mayors and officials from around the world together with thinkers, innovators, and creatives at the cutting-edge of urban problem-solving and imagination,” said James Anderson, who leads the Government Innovation Program at Bloomberg Philanthropies. “Bloomberg CityLab 2023 will offer deep learning, idea exchange, and bold exploration into the new generation approaches fit for the new generation challenges we face – providing a springboard for mayors and city leaders to drive sustainable, lasting impact for residents worldwide.”

“Cities have long been at the forefront of human ingenuity and innovation, but they also face enormous pressures, ranging from the impacts of a changing climate to ensuring affordable housing for all,” said Bunmi Akinnusotu, Director of City Innovation at the Aspen Institute. “We are excited to welcome inspiring urban leaders to the nation’s capital for transformative dialogue and action, which is central to the Aspen Institute’s mission. Together at Bloomberg CityLab 2023, we will explore newfound learnings and innovative solutions that can benefit the communities they serve across the world.”

Bloomberg CityLab was founded on the principle that the most important innovation is happening at the local level and that global impact can be achieved when cities share solutions. For over a decade, CityLab summits have crisscrossed the globe, gathering the most influential mayors and voices from hundreds of cities worldwide. Summits have made global headlines, and generated tangible takeaways for attendees. Past CityLab conferences have been hosted in New York, Los Angeles, London, Miami, Paris, Detroit, Washington, D.C., and Amsterdam.

To learn more about Bloomberg CityLab 2023, visit

About Bloomberg Philanthropies:
Bloomberg Philanthropies invests in 700 cities and 150 countries around the world to ensure better, longer lives for the greatest number of people. The organization focuses on five key areas for creating lasting change: the Arts, Education, Environment, Government Innovation, and Public Health. Bloomberg Philanthropies encompasses all of Michael R. Bloomberg’s giving, including his foundation, corporate, and personal philanthropy as well as Bloomberg Associates, a pro bono consultancy that works in cities around the world. In 2022, Bloomberg Philanthropies distributed US$ 1.7 billion. For more information, please visit, sign up for our newsletter,  or follow us on  Facebook,  Instagram,  YouTube,  Twitter, and LinkedIn.

About the Aspen Institute:
The Aspen Institute is a global nonprofit organization whose purpose is to ignite human potential to build understanding and create new possibilities for a better world. Founded in 1949, the Institute drives change through dialogue, leadership, and action to help solve society’s greatest challenges. It is headquartered in Washington, D.C. and has a campus in Aspen, Colorado, as well as an international network of partners. For more information, visit

Media Contacts: 

Bloomberg Philanthropies:
Sam Fuld,

The Aspen Institute:
Jon Purves,

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