2023 EMO Cohort convening in El Paso County, Texas
2023 EMO Cohort convening in El Paso County, Texas

Do you have an idea for a key step—a study, a new type of engagement process, or a pilot program—that could help your local government address needs related to housing, economic or workforce development, child care, transportation, or other circumstances impacting residents’ ability to get ahead? Are you interested in building your professional network and in accessing the expertise of researchers and practitioners working on similar issues and challenges in communities across the country?

ICMA is excited to invite applications for its 2024 Economic Mobility and Opportunity (EMO) Peer Learning Cohort and grant program. This is a unique networking opportunity for ICMA members to receive training, coaching, and funding to effect conditions that promote overall well-being and upward mobility of their residents. This opportunity is made possible with support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Brief applications are being accepted now through May 10. Full details and a link to apply are available online.

ICMA will select teams from up to 15 local governments to make up the 2024 EMO Cohort. Each selected local government will receive a grant of $20,000 for the implementation of an economic mobility assessment, planning or engagement process, or other local activity as part of their participation in the cohort. To support these activities, between June 2024 and January 2025, teams will participate in regular virtual and in-person learning opportunities and access guidance from ICMA staff and subject matter experts on practical tools and resources related to economic mobility issues. The first in-person convening is planned for June 19-21, 2024, in Washington, D.C.

Map of 2023 EMO Cohort Communities

The 2024 program builds on last year’s pilot, which involved 10 diverse localities including rural and urban communities; towns, cities, and counties; and small to large geographies and populations. Summaries of their local efforts and links to final outputs, which can serve as inspiration for prospective applicants, are available here. “Participation in the cohort allowed us to form a network of empathetic, motivated partners who can share ideas and resources,” wrote one member in the final program evaluation, “The grant funding provided data that we had long needed by unbiased experts that will be able to leverage further funding and policy changes.”

ICMA staff will host a brief overview and Q&A session about the 2024 EMO Cohort application process and grant program via Zoom on Friday, April 26, at 1:00 pm ET. Register and receive a link to join the session live or access the recording on demand. Inquiries about the opportunity and related programming can be emailed to emo@icma.org.

New, Reduced Membership Dues

A new, reduced dues rate is available for CAOs/ACAOs, along with additional discounts for those in smaller communities, has been implemented. Learn more and be sure to join or renew today!