Next City publishes articles reported and written by journalists, and op-eds written by academics and practitioners in the fields we cover: urban policy, planning, transportation and design. If you have a submission that promotes your organization’s projects or services, please see the sponsored posts section below.
We welcome well-considered pitches from journalists around the world for our shorter “daily” pieces (800 to 1,500 words) and our weekly features (around 4,000 words). When writing to us, you should note which you’re after.
Generally, we report on urban policy, planning, transportation and design around the world. Writers who are the best fit for us have a deep understanding of the challenges facing cities — ranging from poverty and affordable housing shortages to transportation deserts and failing water systems — and the tools targeted at those problems (whether effective or not). Our regular freelancers (we’re always looking to expand that roster) are committed to the extensive reporting required to explore these complex issues, and adept at translating “policy” to real human impact.
Our readers are people working daily to make their city more sustainable and more equitable, with regards to economics and infrastructure. We’re committed to bringing them smart reads about the new ideas and effective people in these arenas. We seek to highlight a diverse array of voices and perspectives.
We’re looking for specific story pitches, not topic ideas. You must answer the following in your pitch: Why now? (In other words, what’s the news hook?) Why do Next City readers need to know about this? What’s the problem at the center? How has it been or can it be tackled? (You should have a general idea about possible solutions before pitching. “I want to explore … ” won’t get you an assignment.) How does it translate to a broader urban policy context? How has it been covered by other media outlets, local or national? Please include potential sources in your pitch. (Here’s an excellent primer on writing solid pitches, courtesy of NPR.)
We don’t cover events or conferences or symposia or meetings. But you certainly might get a lead on a great story at one. Pitch us after you’ve attended and looked into the idea. We also pass on Q&As, book reviews, history overviews, horse race journalism, white papers, academic treatises and fiction.
Please send article pitches to Kelsey Thomas.
Op-eds should be topical and relevant to Next City’s mission of inspiring positive change in cities, and speak to ideas and policies that can effect such change. They should express a strong, informed opinion. (If you’re writing about your organization or work that you do, please see sponsored posts below.)
All submissions must be original, and not published elsewhere. Maximum length is 1,200 words. We will not consider articles that have already been published, in any form, in print or online.
We don’t pay for op-eds or guarantee publication in advance of receiving a submission. To submit pieces for consideration, please email email@example.com, with “Op-Ed Submission” in the subject line.
We review all emails with op-ed submissions, but we can’t respond to every one. If you haven’t heard back from us in four weeks, feel free to pitch elsewhere.
If you’re with a for-profit business or nonprofit organization and have a submission that promotes you and the work that you do, you can find rates and details about placing a sponsored post in our media kit, or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.