Mayors' Institute on City Design
SCISSORTAIL PARK, OKLAHOMA CITY, OK DESIGNED BY HARGREAVES JONES / PHOTO BY VISIT OKLAHOMA CITY

Lead with Design

With a belief in the power of city design to transform communities, the Mayors’ Institute on City Design (MICD) educates mayors to be the chief urban designers of their cities.

MICD is a leadership initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with the United States Conference of Mayors. Since 1986, we’ve offered collaborative learning programs and resources to mayors in order to make a purposeful, positive impact on America.

SCISSORTAIL PARK, OKLAHOMA CITY, OK DESIGNED BY HARGREAVES JONES / PHOTO BY VISIT OKLAHOMA CITY

Our purpose is to improve people’s lives through design, shaping cities that are resilient, equitable, and thriving.

Solving Arts & Culture Challenges Together

Individual and community values are expressed and validated through arts and culture. We help mayors understand the expansive role that the arts can play in engaging communities, building connections, creating new narratives, and driving economic development.

All Arts & Culture Projects

Solving Equitable Development Challenges Together

Mayors can meet the needs of underserved communities through policies and programs that reduce disparities, while fostering places that are healthy and vibrant. Whether addressing real estate, transit, safety, public health, or housing, we look at how mayors’ decisions can positively impact the lives of all residents.

All Equitable Development Projects

Solving Infrastructure Challenges Together

We believe that every piece of infrastructure a city builds should contribute to the human spirit. We help mayors understand how to build partnerships that ensure infrastructure investments are resilient, sustainable, and lead to a greater quality of life for their people.

All Infrastructure Projects

Solving Policy & Planning Challenges Together

Municipal actions, laws, and processes can all impact city design. Bringing together experts across design fields, we help facilitate conversations around policy so that mayors are informed and empowered to bring their vision to life.

All Policy & Planning Projects

Solving Public Space Challenges Together

Public spaces, including parks, streetscapes, plazas, and waterfronts, often define a city. Our programs help mayors understand how these spaces can be created so that they are welcoming, useful, and unique to their community.

All Public Space Projects

Solving Revitalization Challenges Together

Every city has neighborhoods that have suffered disinvestment and decline, despite often having resilient and steadfast residents. We help mayors lift the voices of their neighborhoods, leading to revitalization that celebrates culture and legacy, and does not lead to displacement.

All Revitalization Projects

How to Participate

Mayors

We offer highly collaborative in-person sessions, fellowship programs, virtual learning, and more to help mayors lead with design.
Express Interest

Design Leaders

Be an active voice in meaningful conversations about the future of our cities, while collaborating on real challenges that can improve lives.
Express Interest

Alumni

Whether you recently completed a session or are a long-time graduate of the program, we offer a variety of ways to stay involved and engaged in our programs.
Upcoming Events
Summer 2023

MICD 77

TBD

The 77th National Session of the Mayors' Institute on City Design will take place in Summer 2023.

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Summer 2023

Summer 2023 Special Session

TBD

Two Special Sessions will take place in 2023.

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Fall 2023

Fall 2023 Special Session

TBD

Two Special Sessions will take place in 2023.

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Fall 2023

MICD 78

TBD

The 78th National Session of the Mayors' Institute on City Design will take place in Fall 2023.

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Resources

Ready to lead with design?

Contact Us