What is the Fab City Global Initiative?

Fab City Global Initiative is a collective of civic leaders, makers, urbanists and innovators working on shifting the industrial urban paradigm to one that better supports life on Earth. A global collaboration with a distributed network of cities prototypes local approaches to meet the challenge of producing everything the city consumes by 2054.

Global Context

In an ever-changing world innovation is not an option, it is a necessity. Climate change and social exclusion require us to reinvent the fundamental systems which we depend upon, a task which requires courage, coherence and long-term thinking. The rate at which humans consume planetary resources is putting the systems of our planet and ourselves at risk. In order to revert the consequences of rapid urbanization, we need a deep transformation of how we organize production and consumption in cities.

The City

Cities are where most of the world’s population now live. They offer the best opportunity to effect practical change at scale, and in a context to which people can relate. In recognition of this, Fab City works to connect a global network of cities, each working to create local change. As a distributed community, the success of each actor contributes to the success of the network as a whole, establishing a framework for beneficial exchange.


Fab City rethinks the boundaries of the city, advocating for ‘Products In Trash Out’ (PITO) to ‘Data In Data Out’ (DIDO). This means that production occurs inside the city, along with the circulation of materials. The city’s imports and exports would mostly be found in the form of data: information, knowledge, design, code.

The Rise of the Maker

The power of making is not limited to industry anymore, neither the power of innovating. Access to tools is widespread today, through the expansion of Fab Labs, Hacker Spaces and Maker Spaces around the world. Fab City recognizes this global trend and looks to scale up the potential of digital fabrication tools in Fab Labs and makerspaces to design, develop, create, and deploy the technologies that will reconfigure the relationship between consumption and production in cities. Fab City builds upon the thousands of spaces, and communities around them, that are democratizing disciplines such as engineering, biology, computation, arts and fabrication to enable the global movement of knowledge around how we make things, and how our cities function.

Fab City acts at the convergence of these global trends within a full-stack framework to empower citizens and actors from the local to global level.

Fab City Global Initiative comprises..

Fab City network: the organisations and public bodies (cities) working on the Fab City 40-year goal.

Fab City network member cities: 34 cities who have taken up the challenge to move towards 100% local production by 2054. These cities from across the globe engage in action-research, developing local prototypes for the Fab City. Collectively these cities comprise a global-action network.

Fab City Collective: influencers, brand-champions, advocates of Fab City who in their own fields, working on the research and development of the Fab City goals.

Fab City Foundation:

Fab City Roadmap

Our Roadmap is unique. Launched in 2011 by the City of Barcelona, it is now in constant development thanks to the distributed network of cities, individual advocates, NGOs, academics and industry partners. We employ a collective approach of ‘learning-by-doing’ to constantly prototype, experiment, succeed and fail in our quest to produce everything we consume by 2054.

Join the Fab City roadmap and shift the paradigm in your city.

Join the initiative!