Make Plans to Come to Dallas

April 18-20, 2024

A community's opportunity for socializing is among the
most influential factors in determining where people choose to live.
The 2010 Knight Foundation’s Soul of the Community Project

Four Session Tracks with Case Studies and Technical Workshops

The premier trendspotting event on strategies in governance and management of the social economy. An annual networking event where tools and promising practices are showcased in four tracks Governance, Safety, Planning and Vibrancy.

  1. First Time Attendee: Build a team and attend the pre-Summit Sociable City Academy on Thursday, April 18
  2. Share your Story: Have a story to share? Case study of a successful strategy? Submit a proposal today!
  3. Promote your Product or Service: Become a sponsor for customized promotion to a select audience

City Leaders Adapting to Change

Today, downtowns and city centers are struggling to adapt to changes in where people live, work, play, shop and study. Many governments and corporations are negotiating with employees on a hybrid approach to work, attempting to bring them back to vacant offices with long-term property leases while providing them the flexibility to work from home.

In the meantime, fear of declining property values is forcing governments and business improvement districts that rely on taxes to support services to find solutions; among them is transforming offices into condos and apartments.

But condos do not build communities. It is unique social spaces that provide community connections. Many of these businesses, including casual coffee shops, take-out, dine-in cafes and restaurants, and evening and late-night entertainment, have either closed or carry substantial debt.

Staff shortages in businesses and government, especially police and other public safety agencies, create an additional challenge. Restaurants limit hours or seating, while nighttime entertainment venues cannot find security staff when risk is mounting for nighttime safety.

Attend the Summit for a unique opportunity to join with a network of leaders advancing innovation in planning, public and venue safety, business district management, mobility, and conflict resolution in active nighttime social districts.

Gather Solutions and Strategies

Interact with Practitioners on These Topics

  • Create a dedicated office on the social economy for daytime and nighttime management
  • Form a team for public safety and venue compliance
  • Learn about innovation in nighttime mobility
  • Gather tools to preserve the historical and cultural value of independent venues
  • Enhance public spaces with outdoor seating, markets, and festivals
  • Build policy, mediation, and conflict resolution for mixed-use areas
  • Develop harm reduction strategies for alcohol, drugs, and guns
  • Assure safety for women and vulnerable populations in venues and public space
  • Encourage greater cultural diversity in the social economy

Your Peer-to-Peer Networking Opportunity

Meet Representatives from Diverse Backgrounds

Who Attends the Summit?

  • Safety: Frontline supervisors and officers, including police, fire, code, alcohol, and health agencies
  • Administration: Elected officials, city managers, planning and economic development managers
  • Development: Public works, parking, transportation, and mobility managers
  • Hospitality: Operators, and association staff representing restaurants, bars, live and DJ music
  • Producers and distributors: Food, beverages, and equipment
  • Culture: Event and festival planners, promoters, placemaking and district management

Key Concepts Defined

The Social Economy is the collective revenue and employment generated by hospitality businesses and the suppliers of products and services to support sociability during the day, evening, and late-night.

Hospitality is creating the social space for people to dine, drink, listen and dance.

Responsible Hospitality assures a safer and more secure environment that is accessible to all.

A Sociable City that maintains an efficient government to nurture and support innovation and sustainability of creative dining and entertainment businesses, festivals, and events is a foundation for future development.

2024 Summit Features New Themes

"Vision is the art of seeing what is invisible to others." ~ Jonathon Swift

Fusion is joining two or more systems to form a single entity
Women blaze new trails in
planning social activity
Sustain resources and culture for a vibrant social economy

Fusion is Joining Two or More Systems to Form a Single Entity

  • Hospitality: Food, beverages, music, and dance are reimagined through the fusion of unique ingredients, processes, and cultural heritage of entrepreneurs who blend their experiences and backgrounds into innovation where people dine, drink, listen to music, and dance.
  • Safety: COVID brought a new alliance among health, police, fire, public works, transportation, and planning to expedite changes in hours, occupancy, outdoor seating, alcohol regulations, and transportation. Many have formalized and continue collaborating, using data-based evidence for training and venue compliance.
  • Technology: Social media, ID scanners, metal detectors, online reservations, body-worn cameras, facial recognition, CCTV, and audio communication systems bring tools to better monitor and manage security and safety in venues and public spaces.
  • Mobility: Taxis, e-hail, public transit, bikes, scooters, pedestrians and take-out/delivery pick-up blend together for curbside and sidewalk spaces.

Women Blaze New Trails in the Social Economy

  • Chefs, restaurateurs, and venue operators are transforming social space, food, beverage, and entertainment options.
  • Police officers are less likely to use force and fire duty weapons and are better able to engage with diverse cultural groups.
  • Regulators provide more flexibility in licensing to meet changing social trends.
  • Security staff are more approachable by women and other at-risk patrons.
  • District planners and managers prioritize safer nighttime mobility options

Sustain Resources and Culture for a Vibrant Social Economy

  • Environment: Hotels, dining, and entertainment venues are large consumers of energy and water and produce waste from food, bottles, and dishwashing. They can be essential partners in ecology practices.
  • Independent Businesses: Dining and entertainment venues in downtowns and city centers often bring a long history of providing social spaces for celebrations, entertainment, and relationships. Rising real estate values can often drive these businesses away, and with them, the social and cultural heritage they contribute.
  • Neighborhoods: Managing the growth of development requires a constant focus on creating safe spaces for people to socialize and maintaining the quality of life for residents, free from invasive sounds and disorder.
  • Hospitality Workforce: A sustainable and reliable workforce requires special attention to the mental health of hospitality workers. Counseling and supportive work environments are needed to reduce drug and alcohol abuse, manage stress at work and from domestic challenges like cost of living and childcare, and clear paths to career mobility.

Registration | Early Rate Extended to March 8

Summit Registration Includes: Thursday Reception; Friday and Saturday Breakfast and Luncheon; and Friday and Saturday Educational Presentations and Workshops.
Academy Registration Includes: Online learning and onsite training, luncheon and breaks. Also includes workbook and reference documents.
Summit $100 Team Discount: Teams of 3+ people from the same city qualify for a Summit team discount. Write to Susan Hernandez to get your team discount code. Each person registers separately using the same code.


Register By
March 8

Register After
March 8

Register After
April 5

Separate Registration

Team Member

Team Member

Team Member


RHI's Building Blocks

our approach


An alliance of stakeholders dedicated to nighttime governance is key to long-term success


Sociable cities anticipate mobility needs and create systems to maintain a high quality of life


Safety in social districts and within venues requires coordination among public and private partners


Vibrancy is created by the mix of social experiences in venues and in public space both day and night

Become Part of a Global Network

RHI has held events since 1984. The Sociable City Summit series began in 2015 in Los Angeles and Chicago, then Charleston, Austin, New Orleans, Philadelphia, Seattle, Virtual, New York and this year, Dallas. Here is a summary of unique representatives, cities, states/provinces and countries over the years.

An Invitation to Tell your Story

The Summit is your opportunity to share success in social economy governance, planning, vibrancy, and safety. We invite you to submit a proposal for a workshop focused on either an initiative you’d like to share in one of four tracks or to showcase your city’s holistic

Not all stories need a happy ending. You can also share“lessons learned” and persistence despite the odds.

Format Length: Workshops are 45 minutes: 30 minutes for presentation and 15 minutes for discussion.

  • Speakers: You can present with 1-3 speakers.
  • Track: Select a track (governance, safety, vibrancy, or planning)
  • Topic: Initiative showcase or a city showcase (holistic overview of your city)

Speaker Rates and Responsibilities

  • Once accepted, all presenters must register and update their profile online with photo, bio, and links to relevant documents.
  • Companies or organizations cannot present their products or services unless it is a sponsored presentation.
  • Presenters receive a $200 registration discount.
  • Presenters are responsible for travel.
  • Some scholarships are available upon request.

Gather this Information Before Applying:

  • A Title that is compelling and “social media” worthy
  • A Subtitle that inspires attendance
  • A 250-word description
  • A list of learning objectives
  • The bio and photo of all presenters

Here is a link to the proposal form.

Thanks for Sharing.

The Responsible Hospitality Institute is grateful to the hundreds of individuals who came to events over 40 years to share their stories. Our events fulfill our mission of education and sharing of resources through programs and publications.