About the Programme
**How Would You Transform Your City?**
Emerging City Champions is a fellowship and micro-grant program for young civic innovators with bold ideas to enhance public space, mobility, and civic engagement. This program is powered by 8 80 Cities and John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.
**Here's How It Works**
We're elevating new voices in city building and supporting bold projects that strengthen communities. We are looking for future city leaders with creative solutions that:
- Activate public life in public spaces
- Enhance mobility options
- Build a culture of civic engagement
Public space, mobility, and civic engagement have always been central to Emerging City Champions. With the pandemic and nation-wide protests highlighting deep inequities in our systems, it’s clear that we need to invest in diverse young leaders to create more resilient, inclusive, and equitable communities for our collective future.
The fellowship is open to U.S. residents aged 19-35 with an innovative project idea and the drive to see it through in one of Knight Foundation's investment communities. Applicants may be activists, educators, tactical urbanists, designers, artists, entrepreneurs, and more. We want diverse voices with fresh perspectives, talent, and commitment to building vibrant neighborhoods and cities.
**1 Year. $5,000.**
Champions will receive $5,000 in seed funding to implement one community project in one year. We are looking for projects that respond to community needs, build on local assets, and are implemented through collaboration. Projects must address public space, mobility, and/or civic engagement challenges in the community, and must be based in one of the 26 cities where Knight Foundation invests.
**A Three-Day Experiential Studio**
A major part of the program is the Emerging City Champions Studio in Toronto, Canada. The three-day Studio equips participants with leadership training and practical tools to implement their community project. Champions participate in site tours, workshops, networking events, and engaging presentations by city building experts. Flights, meals, and accommodation are covered by the program.
**The ECC Network**
Champions join a supportive and inspiring network of their peers from across the country. Participants receive ongoing mentorship from experts in diverse fields such as planning, design, communications, and more. 8 80 Cities and Knight Foundation will expose participants to opportunities for additional funding, professional growth, and support.
- Applicants must live in the U.S., and they must be aged 19-35 years old at the time they apply.
- Applicants must be available to participate in an online Virtual Learning Lab on August 22 and 29, 2020, and they must be able to travel to Canada from October 23 to 27, 2020 for ECC Studio.
- Applicants must propose a community project that activates public life in public spaces, enhances mobility options, and/or builds a culture of civic engagement. The project must take place in one of the 26 communities where Knight Foundation invests. Priority will be given to projects that also address Knight Foundation’s goals in that community, OR support Knight’s Smart City Strategy.
- Applications must include a multimedia submission that describes their project (short video, poster, slideshow, blog post, visual rendering, etc.).
8 80 Cities is a non-profit organization that brings citizens together to enhance mobility and public space so that together we can create more vibrant, healthy, and equitable communities. We believe that if everything we do in our public spaces is great for an 8 year old and an 80 year old, then it will be great for all people.