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A woman speaks at the Summit.


Many of the challenges our municipalities face in transitioning to low-carbon, inclusive cities are so complex and polarizing that no one organization can address them in isolation. Our labs provide a place and process for unlikely collaborators to problem solve and develop new approaches to complex urban challenges.

Collaboration through Future Cities Canada Labs provides the required infrastructure for us to collectively imagine our future, focusing on four areas of urban innovation, including: capital, infrastructure, governance and participation.

Civic Capital Movement, Our Urban Future, Future City Builders and Innovate MY Future are exciting examples of Future Cities Canada Labs.

Civic Capital Movement

Civic capital refers to our cities’ shared assets — or resources —from which we collectively stand to derive most of our benefits, regardless of ownership.

The Civic Capital Movement brings together a group of partners working to steer financial capital towards our civic assets. Civic Capital aims to explore and experiment in developing the next generation of system financing tools and models for our current and future commons and collective wealth. We believe this will reconfigure the way cities, citizens, communities, investors and businesses work together.

Lab research includes:

This work is led by Evergreen, Community Foundations of Canada, McConnell Foundation, MIS, Dark Matter Labs and MaRS Discovery District.

Our Urban Future

In the coming decades, unprecedented public and private-sector investments in urban infrastructure will transform our cities. If managed with foresight and vision, this investment represents a tremendous opportunity to position Canada as a global leader in low-carbon, inclusive city building. 

Our Urban Future convenes a group of infrastructure experts from urban areas across Canada, including planners, agencies and members of local, provincial and federal government. Together, these participants will explore how strategic foresight tools could help Canada invest more strategically in infrastructure and shape initiatives that create responsive, reliable and future-ready plans for urban infrastructure.

A group of visionary leaders are assembling around this work beginning with Deloitte, OCAD University, University of Toronto and Century Initiative.

Future City Builders

Youth in a lab workshop
Photo courtesy YouthfulCities/CityHive

In 2018, Future City Builders engaged 150 youth, aged 18-29 years old in five Canadian cities: Vancouver, Calgary, Hamilton, Toronto and Halifax. This pilot brought together 30 youth in each city to create and launch innovative ideas for urban food, water, transportation, housing and waste systems.

In the next iteration of the program, Future Cities Builders will integrate three programming elements: a 3-day Evergreen Leadership Intensive including participation in the 2020 Future Cities Canada Summit, YouthfulCities 30Lab City Building Challenge, and a series of local Professional Networking Events.

Future City Builders is presented in partnership by Evergreen abd Youthful Cities, and championed by RBC Future Launch.

Learn more.

Innovate MY Future

Funded by the Government of Canada under the Canada Service Corps program, Innovate MY Future brings together the GTHA’s leading social innovation organizations to inspire youth civic engagement in local climate change-related issues and needs. Participants receive structured climate leadership training from local experts, join a local team of 5 to run a community consultation, and plan and execute a 5-month climate change action project.