Since 2017, thousands of public servants, technologists, and civic innovators from around the world gather at FWD50 to answer one vital question: How do we use technology to make society better for all?

After a blockbuster virtual event in 2020 with participation from nearly 30 countries, we’re launching a hybrid conference that offers the best of in-person and virtual models.

What’s coming in 2021?

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.

Attendees of FWD50 2020 get access the recordings of the talks from the 2020 event. It is also possible to purchase a content subscription.

What people said

“Once again, FWD50 sets a new standard.”

“This was one of the best-run conferences I have ever attended or spoken at.”

“It’s my first year attending FWD50. I am kicking myself for not attending in the past.”

“Every single session that I attended was mind blowing.”

“I came into this conference not knowing what to expect. I was BLOWN AWAY. What an amazing lineup.”

“As expected, FWD50 is leading the way in building virtual events that bring the world together in ways that weren’t possible in 2019.”

“While I miss the face to face aspect, this is as good as it gets for a digital conference.”

“It just keeps getting better every year!”

“Some of the most inspiring and fascinating speakers, all on a platform that was easy to use.”

“Very impressive speakers, content and use of technology to facilitate a remarkable virtual conference. Depth, breath and diversity were outstanding.”

“The tools more than proved that digital conferences can be just as engaging!”

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. Goverment is Big Tech for public good, and it’s your job to keep it running smoothly while replacing outdated infrastructure and anticipating changes.

FWD50 has the deep-dive workshops, hard-won lessons, and diverse voices you need to shape the platforms on which government runs.


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 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.

Michael Nelson

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

Janet Haven

Executive Director
Data & Society Research Institute

Martha Lane Fox


Matti Schneider

Chief Innovation Officer
Office of the French Ambassador for Digital Affairs

Carolyn Porco

Visiting Scholar
UC Berkeley, California

Afua Bruce

Afua Bruce

Chief Program Officer

Sue Gardner

Founder & CEO
Tiny Ventures

Danielle Krettek

Google Empathy Lab

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

Our partners

Some of the world’s leading tech companies help us put on FWD50.