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Urban Festival 2020: Empowering the Civic

1 October 2020 - 31 October 2020

Online Conference

Website Link

Conference Partners

SA Cities Network


The Empowering the Civic edition of Urban Festival provides a platform to explore the potential of civic-tech to overcome current challenges and barriers and leap forward into new ways of civic engagement and mobilisation for urban development. Through this, it will aim to connect different parts of society, foster collaboration and seek solutions.

  • How can new technologies improve governance and accountability, and make cities work better?

  • Can it be used to bridge digital divides and support service delivery? To power town hall meetings, promote learning and improve democracy?

  • Who is being left out, and how can we bring them in?

  • Why can’t it be used to build trust, educate, share information and make processes

  • more transparent?

  • What if it could be used to unlock the youth population and try innovative processes

  • to really activate and build engagement?

  • How can the use of Civi-Tech empower the people?


Urban Festival is a series of virtual engagements hosted by South African Cities Network (SACN), Civic Tech Innovation Network (CTIN), The Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA), Open Cities Lab (OCL), Journalism and Media Lab (JAMLAB), Our Future Cities (OFC) and others. The festival will run from 1-31 October 2020, culminating on World Cities Day.

Learning, collaboration and networking will be facilitated through workshops, lectures and discussion groups, and film screenings, Instagram takeovers, podcasts and virtual exhibitions will encourage engagement. All materials created for and during the event will be available on the festival webpage long after the actual event, ensuring that stories, tours, research and voices are preserved and can be used to foster greater understanding and therefore better solutions.

We therefore invite all civil society, organisations, designers, planners, story-tellers, civil servants, city-dwellers and urban enthusiasts to participate in Empowering the Civic; to begin the virtual conversation toward more accessible and inclusive future cities.

If you would like to host an event in response to the curatorial statement above, whether it is a webinar, workshop, virtual tour or something totally different please apply here.

Event description based directly on partner announcement.

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