A new collaborative fostering transformative thinking and action for future cities, community building and Earth stewardship

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What are the physical, digital, and social infrastructures needed so that city dwellers – human and more-than-human – over the next seven generations will thrive in just, radically inclusive, caring, and regenerative communities?


Field Building

Creating imagination spaces, a 7GenCities commons, and system demonstrations

Learning Community

Hosting a Learning Community of Indigenous-Municipal-Civic city cohorts

Social Finance

Exploring the future of social and civic infrastructure financing


Creating imagination spaces, a 7GenCities commons, and system demonstrations
7GenCities field building will include imagining, commoning, and demonstrating civic futures of regenerative possibility.
  • Opening imagination spaces for collective futuring that expand the realm of the possible and help to raise public ambition.
  • Creating a 7GenCities commons where civic imagineers, practitioners, policymakers, academics, students and others can share work and ideas and build collaborations.
  • Building and connecting ‘system demonstrations’ that both show what’s possible in civic contexts and change the underlying systems that enable wide adaptation and scaling of what works.
An example of a civic system demonstration of 7GenCities is the soon-to-be-built Wije’winen Friendship Centre in Halifax and a social infrastructure at the heart of the Centre’s work in the North End, Every One Every Day Kjiputuk/Halifax.


Hosting a Learning Community of Indigenous-Municipal-Civic city cohorts
The 7GenCities Learning Community is dedicated to deepening learning about social infrastructure planned or underway in multiple cities, and which is being developed with peers committed to embedding Truth & Reconciliation in the work. Together with Indigenous, municipal, academic, and community leaders, as well as other civic imagineers, we will imagine, explore and engage in reciprocal and immersive learning and networking of city-based visions and initiatives.
Co-hosted with the Mi’kmaw Native Friendship Centre and Evergreen, a first gathering took place at the Brick Works in Toronto on October 16-17, 2023. Read the Learning Report here, and join the conversation.
Exploring the future of social and civic infrastructure financing
A key focus of 7GenCities involves challenging and reformulating how we understand value creation, flow and investment in our civic economies. Value questions that arise in a 7GenCities context include:
These are big questions that require collective thought and concerted action.

Together with co-hosts Mi’kmaw Native Friendship Centre and Evergreen, 7GenCities convened discussions that explored the Future of Social & Civic Infrastructure Financing on July 10-12, 2023, in Toronto. The aim was to build an alliance that grows, connects, multiplies and eventually designs new mechanisms, models and instruments for civic infrastructure financing. Read the Learning Report here, and join the conversation.


Inspired by the Seventh Generation Principle of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy and similar seven generations teachings that hold deeply spiritual and relational philosophies related to learning from the wisdom of our ancestors and the Earth, and making decisions and provisioning for current and future generations, 7GenCities fosters sacred, reciprocal relationships with peoples, lands and natures; radical inclusiveness; seven generations thinking and practice; and decolonizing systems in our city building, Earth stewardship and transformation of cities.


John Borrows
Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Law, University of Victoria, Canada

“This book reveals how life's details might better correspond with life's broader sources to create healthier urban futures.”

Leonie Sandercock
FRSC, Professor in Community Planning, University of British Columbia, Canada

“Creative, hopeful, audacious. Here is a book that the city building professions have been, unknowingly, waiting for. Transcending technical and policy ‘fixes’, this book addresses the cultural and spiritual dimensions of shaping cities as if people, land, and nature were sacred. An impressive, pluriversal collection of essays, asking arguably THE most important question of our era: what will it take to build seven generation cities?”

Nigel Jacob
Co-Chair / Co-Founder, Mayor's Office of New Urban Mechanics, USA

“The work that we do together matters. It should be seen as sacred. Even the act of figuring out what this means is something that we should do together, and as such is a sacred process. This book ties many of the relevant threads together into the pattern we need for doing the work of cities in the 21st century. It liberates us from the mechanistic models of the past. It liberates us to figure out what's next for cities. Those of us who work to build just cities and communities need this book.”

Arturo Escobar
Professor of Anthropology Emeritus, University of North Carolina, USA

“Nature and the sacred have long been banished from the city. Yet can cities become the site of wisdom, wholeness, and healing?  This is the urgent question this unique and wonderfully creative volume tackles by weaving together indigenous ontologies, the relational turn in urban studies, and decoloniality to persuasively develop the principles of “sacred civics” and “seven-generation cities” as the foundation for a substantial rethinking of city building and the democratization of city futures...Their call for a relational accountability for the urban worlds we design, grounded on a renewed Earth spirituality and a paradigm of interdependence and care, couldn’t be timelier.”

Sheila R. Foster
Professor at Georgetown University, USA

Sacred Civics offers a forward-looking framework that re-imagines what our cities can be if we change our mindset to a more relational one.”

Get in touch to explore joining us!
We want to hear from you!

We are very interested in imagining and co-designing together what 7GenCities fit for the long term could be in different contexts.

If you want to build and invest with us on this journey, please get in touch! You can sign up to stay in the loop.
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Core partners of 7GenCities
Jayne Engle
7GenCities co-holder & Mission co-holder, Dark Matter Labs

Jayne Engle has worked for decades in civic systems change globally – from regional policy and economic transition, to city planning, participatory research, and philanthropy. She is committed to urban transformations for the long term and carries this out through practice, research and teaching with 7GenCities, Dark Matter Labs, McGill University, and multiple collaborators.
Tanya Chung-Tiam-Fook
7GenCities co-holder, Dark Matter Labs

Tanya Chung-Tiam-Fook is deeply engaged in Indigenous, environmental, transdisciplinary and intercultural approaches to research, land relationships and stewardship, climate resilience, innovation, education, health and mental wellness, and placekeeping. She is passionate about reciprocal, collaborative and intergenerational pathways for learning and knowledge co-creation, practice, and partnerships in her roles within project and research leadership, academia, advising and community.
Pam Glode-Desrochers
Executive Director, Mi’kmaw Native Friendship Centre

Pamela Glode-Desrochers has worked for her urban Indigenous community through the Friendship Centre movement for 30 years and is now Executive Director of the Mi’kmaw Native Friendship Centre as well as Vice President of the National Association of Friendship Centres in Canada. Pam is a L’nu (The People) woman and grandmother, and a member of Millbrook First Nation community in Truro, Nova Scotia.
Michelle Baldwin
Senior Advisor, Transformation,Community Foundations of Canada
Michelle has worked regionally, nationally and globally to explore the role of philanthropy and charities in systems transformation and the intersecting pathways to better futures for all. In her role at Community Foundations of Canada and teaching at Huron University College in Governance, Leadership and Ethics she is doing a deep dive and learning in the areas of community finance, collaborative governance, and web3 and emerging technology -  guided by equity, reconciliation and a long term view.
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