America's Cities are the engines of our economy.
We want to help them recover.

Getting Back To Work is a program from Better Cities Project, a nonprofit researching and advancing public-policy solutions to the challenges facing America’s cities.

Faced with pandemic-driven economic contraction, every city leader now faces a big question: What’s next?

The stakes couldn’t be higher. Recovery won’t be uniform — some communities will bounce back more quickly than others, and pockets of growth will exist alongside sustained economic contraction.

We think there are practical answers to the question of what’s next, and we’ve compiled them into this economic recovery playbook and its companion website here at

Some recommendations are broad and others are specific enough to warrant model ordinance language, which we have included. But all share a few traits:

For cities to thrive, their leaders need the tools and information to make informed, innovative decisions. The policies suggested in this guide can be a foundation, not just for getting back to normal, but for your community to flourish for years.

Stay Smart About Cities.