Cities & States

Building high-road cities, metropolitan regions, and states is both good for citizens and a key way to move the national dialogue toward progressive policy solutions. Much of our work is focused on sharing high-road policy and governance (that is, policy that promotes shared prosperity, environmental sustainability, and efficient democratic government) with state and local leaders. View our latest publications and current initiatives that support cities & states below.


A New Jersey that Works for Working People                        Integrated Water Management: A Guide for City Leaders 
A Pittsburgh that Works for Working People Cities at Work: Progressive Local Policies to Rebuild the Middle Class

Mayors Innovation Project

The Mayors Innovation Project is a learning network among American mayors committed to "high road" policy and governance: shared prosperity, environmental sustainability, efficient democratic government.

State Smart Transportation Initiative

Working with CEOs at state DOTs, the State Smart Transportation Initiative promotes "smart transportation" practices that promote environmental sustainability and equitable economic development while maintaining high standards of governmental efficiency and transparency.

Legacy Community Alliance for Health

The Legacy Community Alliance for Health is a 5-year project aimed at increasing the capacity of Wisconsin municipalities to consider the health implications of their policymaking, programing and budgeting.

Emerald Cities Collaborative

The Emerald Cities Collaborative is a national group working to create high-road energy efficiency programs in ten major cities nationwide. COWS was a co-founder of the organization and is a leader in the Milwaukee Network.

Efficiency Cities Network

The Efficiency Cities Network shares best practices in high-road energy efficiency policy and program design. In addition to the Efficiency Cities Network, COWS has worked with cities, states and other NGOs to promote energy efficiency in public buildings by providing policy research and analysis as well as technical assistance on energy efficiency program design, implementation, and financing. COWS has been a leader in innovative energy efficiency programs for cities, consulting with municipalities around the country to help establish whole-house retrofit programs that save energy and create jobs.