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Next City Vanguard Conference Big Idea Exchange

Watch the Big Idea Exchange from Vanguard Greensboro.

September 23, 2021

Join the Next City Vanguards as they share solutions from across the country and insights from Greensboro, N.C. during The Big Idea Exchange. Because everyone presenting is a Vanguard, you'll hear from a lineup of speakers like no other virtual event offered before by Next City.

The Big Idea Exchange is the culmination of our annual Vanguard Conference. This is your chance to hear from our cohort of rising urban leaders who will share about solutions that help move “Toward an Equitable Future for All,” and about how their work across the country could have application in a city like Greensboro, N.C., which is our host city for the convening. The Vanguard conference is an experiential gathering of rising urban leaders working to improve cities across sectors, including urban planning, community development, entrepreneurship, government, transportation, sustainability, design, art and media.

Next City Vanguards will have spent four days learning in Greensboro about where it has been, what is happening now, and where it wants to go. Then they will leverage their collective experience to exchange big ideas with the city’s leaders in this special live-streamed event. Vanguards will draw from their knowledge of solutions, experience in the field and passions to “exchange,” because our goal is for participants and host city both to emerge from the conference enriched and inspired in equal measure.

The Big Idea Exchange focuses on three subject areas. Vanguards will present their ideas to a live audience as well as our virtual audience while answering these questions.

  • How Do We Create a Vibrant & Accessible Downtown Community That Preserves Greensboro’s History & Reflects Its Diverse Culture?
  • How Can Greensboro Attract and Retain Its Student Population, and Better Leverage Its University Resources, As Drivers of Economic Development?
  • What Does the Future of Affordable Housing in Greensboro Look Like?

Teammates will work together on presentations that showcase examples of solutions piloted in their home cities, or in cities they are familiar with, that could be replicated in Greensboro. In addition, based on the conference panel presentations and their conversations with Greensboro's subject-area ambassadors, they will identify successful solutions unfolding in the city, and how lessons learned elsewhere could inform the challenges Greensboro is facing they heard about during this conference.

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