Since 2017, we’ve pushed the boundaries of what’s possible for a digital government conference, both online and off—and this year is no exception. With over 100 speakers from 20 countries, an extended lineup of workshops and book clubs, and plenty of new surprises up our sleeves, we can’t wait to take the covers off this year’s event in just a few short weeks!

FWD50 at a glance

Year-round online content culminating in a 4-day conference.

100+ speakers from government, academia, and technology.

Thousands of participants from all over the world.

Bi-weekly online content, monthly workshops, quarterly book clubs.

What’s coming in 2021?

The annual conference agenda is live! Check out our interactive agenda or get more details on a variety of other content and events we run throughout the week.

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A look back at last year

3000+ attendees descend on Canada’s Capital City every fall to talk about the future of digital and open government. Watch the 2020 recap, and join us for 2021 as we gather thousands virtually from around the globe.

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What people are saying


Our faculty joins us from around the world to share their knowledge at FWD50 each November. Here’s a taste of the amazing speakers you’ll be learning from this year.

Martha Lane Fox


Janet Haven

Executive Director
Data & Society Research Institute

Danielle Krettek

Google Empathy Lab

Audrey Tang

Audrey Tang

Digital Minister

Sue Gardner

Founder & CEO
Tiny Ventures

Michael Nelson

Senior Fellow
Technology and International Affairs Program, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

Afua Bruce

Afua Bruce

Chief Program Officer

Joy Bonaguro

Statewide Chief Data Officer
State of California

Kristo Vaher

Kristo Vaher

Chief Technology Officer
Republic of Estonia

Pooja Munshi

Head of Web
UN Environment Programme (UNEP)

Carolyn Porco

Visiting Scholar
UC Berkeley, California

Laure Lucchesi

Director of Etalab
Direction Interministérielle du Numérique (French Government)

Want to take the stage? If you’ve got a talk to give or a speaker to propose, contact us.

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Something for everyone

Government executives

For modern leaders, technology is no longer an option. It’s the key to better services, more inclusive design, lower costs, and increased transparency.

But while tech can help government, it’s also fundamentally reshaping society. Technology isn’t just in service of policy—it is policy. To help executives navigate these tumultuous waters, we launched a packed 3-day track in 2020 tailored to government executives, which we’ll bring back for 2021.


AI. The Internet of Things. Big Data. Cloud Computing. Government is Big Tech for public good, and it’s your job to keep it running smoothly while replacing outdated infrastructure, listening at scale, and anticipating changes.

FWD50 has the deep-dive workshops, hard-won lessons, and diverse expert voices you need to shape the platforms on which governments will run in the future. Join our community to get involved year-round.


Modern society is a partnership between the public and private sector. To keep up with rapid, pervasive change, governments need the help of disruptors in industry.

FWD50 creates meaningful conversations between government and industry. Whether you want to attend, speak, or help support the event, this is the best way to connect with your public service counterparts and chart the course of digital government together.

Our partners

We believe that a rising tide lifts all boats—and the conference wouldn’t be possible without the support of our partners. Some of the world’s leading tech companies help us put on FWD50.