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NYC Speaks Action Plan

62,000 New Yorkers

220+ Conversations with Residents

3 Million Data Points

Explore actions the City is taking based on community-generated data.

About Us

NYC Speaks launched in December 2021 as a movement to transform city government through civic engagement. We believe a new form of government is possible when leaders engage and empower those they’re representing. This, we believe, leads to the bold and holistic solutions that are commensurate with the complex challenges we face as a city.

NYC Speaks is a public-private partnership between the Deputy Mayor’s Office of Strategic Initiatives, a consortium of philanthropic partners, and a network of community leaders and civic institutions engaging tens of thousands of everyday New Yorkers in informing the policies and actions of the Adams administration.

The citywide civic engagement initiative is lifting up policy priorities and insights across diverse NYC communities in tandem with a process to surface the best thinking from inside city government. The research that guides this work aims to identify the most strategic actions (addressing residents’ biggest priorities) by identifying the common ground issues and strategies that emerge from engaging three key stakeholder groups simultaneously: the community, the mayoral administration, and civic institutions.



Amplify the Voices of New Yorkers: Prioritize hearing from New Yorkers typically excluded from decision-making: Black and brown, low-income, immigrant, youth, NYCHA, and disabled communities.


Quantify the Mandate: Through surveys and conversations with residents, collect qualitative and quantitative community-generated data on resident priorities around the city’s most pressing challenges, to serve as a center of gravity for bringing policymakers to the table and encouraging collaboration.


Strengthen Community Partnership: Work on behalf of marginalized communities and with local community-based organizations to create new capacities to inform policy and collaborate with city government.


Build Political Will: Using the community-generated data, generate a public narrative and institutional partnerships that build the political will to advance reforms at a transformative scale, informing government on the city’s most pressing needs and holding city government accountable to the needs of residents.


Co-Design Actions: With community-based organizations, NYC residents, City staff, senior government leaders, and philanthropic and institutional partners, co-develop a set of actionable priorities, policies, and programs that the administration can include in its strategic plans.

Who Supports This

NYC Speaks is a  public-private partnership between the Deputy Mayor’s Office for Strategic Initiatives, a consortium of philanthropic partners, and a network of community leaders and civic institutions. It is an independent initiative funded by the Goodnation Foundation, an IRS 501(c)(3) organization, and managed by HR&A Advisors, a mission-driven, employee-owned urban planning and economic development consulting firm based in NYC.

NYC Speaks is partnered with a robust network of civic and community-based organizations to co-lead this process. The initiative is also convening philanthropic institutions such as the Ford Foundation, Robin Hood Foundation, Galaxy Gives, Trinity Church Wall Street Philanthropies, Education Fund, Carnegie Corporation of New York, Open Society Foundations, New York Community Trust, CityBridge, and the New York Women’s Foundation.

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