The Center for an Urban Future is a NYC-based think tank dedicated to highlighting the critical opportunities and challenges facing New York and other cities, and providing fresh ideas and workable solutions to policymakers. The Center’s primary focus is on growing and diversifying the local economy, expanding economic opportunity and targeting problems facing low-income and working-class neighborhoods. We consistently elevate important, but long overlooked, issues onto the radar of public officials—and we push policymakers to think differently about economic and workforce development.

The Center does this through publishing fact-based research reports that are accessible to a wide audience and holding high-profile policy forums.

Center for an Urban Future’s parent organization is City Futures, Inc., a non-profit 501(c)(3). EIN: 13-3185114.


Jonathan Bowles  |  Executive Director  |  212.479.3347 |  jbowles@nycfuture.org

Jonathan Bowles is the Executive Director of the Center for an Urban Future, a Manhattan-based think tank dedicated to independent research about key policy issues facing New York and other cities. During his 12 years at the Center, he has been the architect of the policy agenda for the Center and is responsible for making it one of New York's most innovative and influential organizations and one in which its policy ideas are well-respected and widely used by policymakers, business leaders, and nonprofit practitioners.

At the Center, Jonathan has authored more than two-dozen reports, including a widely acclaimed 2007 study about the significant impact immigrant entrepreneurs are having on cities' economies, an influential study about New York City's innovation economy and a report about how to retain and grow New York's middle class. He has been asked to be a guest contributor for the New York Times, the Daily News and The Council on Foreign Relations on a range of urban issues including New York City's need to diversify its economy and immigrant entrepreneurs. His research about key economic trends facing New York and its five boroughs, the value of small businesses to cities, and the economic impact of industries ranging from air cargo to biotechnology has been covered in publications ranging from the New York Times and USA Today to The Economist. Jonathan is a frequent moderator and speaker at conferences and panel discussions on urban policy in New York and nationally.

In November 2008, the New York Times' City Room blog featured him in their "Ask the Expert" column, in which he fielded questions from readers for one week about the challenges facing immigrant entrepreneurs. He served on Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer's Small Business Task Force in 2008 to examine the threats facing mom and pop retailers in the borough. In 2006, City Hall News named him one of 35 "Rising Stars Under 40" and in 2005, Time Out New York named him "New York's Finest Troublemaker."

Before joining the Center, he worked as research director for former New York State Senator Franz Leichter and spent time as a freelance journalist.



Ahmad Dowla  |  Deputy Director  |  212.479.3319 |  adowla@nycfuture.org

Ahmad Dowla has been with the Center for an Urban Future since 2006 and now serves as its Deputy Director. In this role, he manages the Center's various projects and oversees development, communications and implementation of organizational strategies, policies and practices. He is also the developer behind the Center's website and the designer behind Center publications and materials. He attended the Bronx High School of Science and CUNY Hunter. Ahmad currently lives in Queens.



Jeanette Estima  |  Research Associate  |  212.479.3351 |  jestima@nycfuture.org

Jeanette Estima is a Research Associate for the Center for an Urban Future. She comes to the Center with a diverse background that is tied together by her love of analysis and interest in social justice. She previously worked as the Morgan Stanley/ANHD Community Development Fellow based at WHEDco in the South Bronx, where she did research and pre-development planning on affordable housing for elder musicians as well as research on the Bronx Music Heritage Center and access to healthy food. While completing her MS in Urban Policy Analysis and Management at The New School, she directed her studies with client-based projects in community and economic development and social policy. Prior to that, she wrote proposals and managed grants at Amnesty International USA, and managed membership for Lambda Legal. Before joining the non-profit sector, Jeanette completed graduate work in Philosophy at the University of Virginia, where she researched and taught in the areas of consciousness and ethics. Jeanette received her BA in Philosophy from Bard College. She lives in Brooklyn, where there is usually something growing on the fire escape and something cooking in the kitchen.



Charlie Euchner  |  Fisher Fellow  |  212.479.3353 |  charlie@nycfuture.org

Charles Euchner, the Fisher Fellow for the Middle Class Jobs Initiative, has explored urban issues for 25 years as a college professor, city planner, think tanker, and author.

Euchner is the author of books on civil rights (Nobody Turn Me Around), public policy (Playing the Field and Urban Policy Reconsidered, with Stephen McGovern), protest and demonstrations (Extraordinary Politics), presidential elections (Selecting the President, with John Maltese), baseball (The Last Nine Innings and Little League, Big Dreams), and writing (The Elements of Writing).

The founding executive director of the Rappaport Institute at Harvard University, Euchner has also been associate director of the Center for Urban and Regional Policy at Northeastern University and coordinator of the City of Boston’s longterm planning process. He was also staff writer for Education Week.

Educated at Vanderbilt University (B.A.) and the Johns Hopkins University (M.A., Ph.D.), Euchner has taught political science at the College of the Holy Cross, St. Mary’s College of Maryland, and the University of Pennsylvania, writing at Yale University, and journalism at SUNY-Purchase.

Most recently, Euchner was a case and editor writer at Yale School of Management. Euchner’s work explored Manchester United, the Samsung-Apple rivalry, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, AARP’s new marketing and outreach strategies, the San Miguel amaranth company, the General Services Administration, the cleanup of the Chesapeake Bay, Maryland’s “global budgeting” health care reform, and the Ebola scare in the U.S.



Adam Forman  |  Senior Researcher  |  212.479.3352 |  aforman@nycfuture.org

Adam Forman is a Senior Researcher at the Center for an Urban Future, where he has authored several reports for the Center on topics ranging from the arts economy to city infrastructure. His editorials have appeared in local and national media outlets including TIME, The Guardian, New York Daily News, New York Post, Gotham Gazette, City Limits, and Next City. He was recently recognized by City & State as a “40 Under 40 Rising Star” in New York City politics. Adam has previously worked at the NYC Public Advocate’s Office, in tax and trade consulting and as a freelance writer. He received his B.A. from Colgate University in economics and an M.A. in political science from the University of Washington. Adam currently lives in Brooklyn.



Christian González-Rivera  |  Senior Researcher  |  212.479.3341 |  cgr@nycfuture.org

Christian González-Rivera is a Senior Researcher at the Center for an Urban Future, where he primarily works on workforce development policy, and has authored a study on older immigrants in New York City. Before coming to CUF he worked at the Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy at New York University, and spent four years as the research manager at the Greenlining Institute in Berkeley, California, where he authored and supported research on housing, philanthropy, diversity in the healthcare workforce, access to financial services, consumer protection, and the green economy. His work has been covered in both English- and Spanish-language media outlets, including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Daily News, Next City, La Opinión, Univision, NY1, WNYC, KPFA, and others. He holds a BA in urban studies from Columbia University and a masters in urban planning from New York University's Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. He lives in Manhattan, and together with his partner Aleks he likes to go hiking and camping in America's most beautiful places.



Tom Hilliard  |  Senior Researcher  |  212.479.3379 |  thilliard@nycfuture.org

Tom Hilliard is a Senior Researcher at the Center for an Urban Future. He has authored numerous studies and commentaries for the Center, including influential analyses of youth in foster care, career pathways, and the changing national workforce development system. He has previously conducted public policy research and development at the Schuyler Center for Analysis and Advocacy, the NYC Office of Public Advocate, Public Citizen’s Congress Watch, and Earthworks. He has also worked as a consultant for organizations around the country, and as a freelance journalist, with articles in The Village Voice, The Progressive, Canoe & Paddle, Newsday and Metroland. He received a B.A. from Auburn University and an M.P.P. from Rutgers University’s Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy.



Amy Parker  |  Communications and Operations Associate  |  212.479.3348 |  aparker@nycfuture.org

Amy Parker is the Communications and Operations Associate for the Center for an Urban Future, a position which brings together her interest in urban policy issues and her experience managing communications and media relations. Before coming to the Center, Amy worked for the East Village Community Coalition, where she assisted small business owners in forming a local merchants association. In New York, she also worked as the Communications Manager for The Blossom Avenue, an Italian architecture and development firm that recently expanded to New York City. In 2013, Amy graduated with distinction from the London School of Economics with a masters in City Design and Social Science. She received her BA in Political Science from the University of Texas in Austin. Amy loves exploring the city, and learning about its history, architecture, and communities.


Gifford Miller, Miller Strategies (Chairman)

Michael Connor, Open Mic (Vice-Chair)

Max Neukirchen, JPMorgan Chase (Treasurer)

Blake Foote, Management Consultant (Secretary)

John H. Alschuler, HR&A Advisors

Margaret Anadu, Goldman Sachs

Jonathan Bowles, Center for an Urban Future

Russell Dubner, Edelman US

Lisa Gomez, L+M Development Partners

Jalak Jobanputra, FuturePerfect Ventures

Kyle Kimball, Con Edison

David Lebenstein, Cushman & Wakefield

Eric S. Lee, Bennett Midland, LLC

Monisha Nariani, Citigroup

Andrew Reicher, UHAB

John Siegal, Baker & Hostetler LLP

Stephen Sigmund, Global Gateway Alliance

Thomas Vecchione, Gensler

Robert Zimmerman, Zimmerman/Edelson Inc


Managing Editor

The Center for an Urban Future (CUF) seeks a Managing Editor to oversee and edit all written work products.

An independent, nonpartisan think tank, CUF uses fact-based research to advance fresh ideas and practical solutions to grow and diversify New York’s economy, reduce inequality and help lower income New Yorkers climb into the middle class. For 20 years, CUF has been a catalyst for policy change in New York City by elevating important issues onto the radar of policymakers. We publish accessible, data-driven reports that are anchored in rigorous research, not preconceived notions about outcome. Our work serves as an invaluable resource for government officials, community groups, nonprofit practitioners and business leaders as they advocate for and implement policies to address some of New York’s biggest challenges.

Reporting directly to the Executive Director, the Managing Editor will serve as CUF’s primary editor and oversee the development of our written products—the very core of our operation. The Managing Editor will supervise a team of researchers and freelancers to ensure fidelity to CUF’s research methodology, and edit written work products to ensure the exceptional level of quality our network has come to expect. While the Managing Editor will be responsible for copy editing materials to ensure that CUF’s publications are readable and accessible, he/she will also provide more substantial editorial feedback and advice during all phases of the research and writing process. 

More specifically, the Managing Editor will:

  • Edit all written work products, including long-form policy reports, policy briefs, commentaries and op-eds, foundation proposals, press releases and the organization’s e-newsletter. This will include both substantial content editing as well as copy editing.
  • Manage a team of researchers. This will include meeting regularly with individual researchers to provide supervision, guidance and feedback about the content, structure and style of reports in development;
  • Iteratively develop and revise written work products with researchers;
  • Plan, in collaboration with the research team, core research activities, tasks, and tools for each project—i.e., establish core questions, determine methodology and timeline, assess quantitative sources, identify interviewees, confirm interview content, and develop survey instruments;
  • Establish clear deadlines and monitor writing and research activities to ensure the timely development of written content;
  • Conduct quality assurance (factual, stylistic, structural) on all written products prior to publication;
  • Determine project staffing and hiring needs; and
  • Contribute to the development of written proposals and tailored fundraising pitches.

We are looking for experienced applicants with exceptional editing and writing skills, a strong sense of newsworthiness, a proven ability to manage a team and a desire to mentor research staff in key areas of research and report production. The ideal candidate would also have a deep familiarity with the New York City policy landscape. The Managing Editor should have at least 7 years of experience in editing.

This is a full-time position. Salary is commensurate with qualifications and experience. Only applicants meeting minimum qualifications for the position will be considered.

How to Apply
Send resume, cover letter, and at least one writing sample to editor@nycfuture.org. No phone calls please. An independent, nonpartisan policy organization, the Center is an equal-opportunity employer that is committed to promoting a diverse and inclusive workplace. We welcome applications from all qualified individuals regardless of race, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, religion, physical or mental disability, marital status, veteran status, or other factors protected by law.


We hire interns for three cohorts: Spring (January to May), Summer (May to August), and Fall (August to December). We accept applications on a rolling basis, so in the subject line of your email please indicate the cohort(s) and internship for which you would be interested in applying.

Policy Research Internship



Policy Research Internship

The Center for an Urban Future (CUF) is an independent nonprofit public policy research think-tank that produces innovative analysis on economic development and workforce development issues in New York City, with a focus on promoting economic diversity while creating opportunities for disadvantaged populations and lower-skill workers. 

Our work seeks to highlight issues within our fields of focus that tend to fly under the radar in mainstream policy discussions.  In recent years, CUF’s research has shined a spotlight on the role of immigrant entrepreneurs as economic engines for many outer-borough neighborhoods, the rise of the design and tech fields in the city, the role of public libraries as human capital institutions, and how community colleges are a crucial and underleveraged element in the city’s workforce development system.

The Center seeks interns with experience in journalism or public policy research to support our work.  Responsibilities can include extensive phone interviews, Web research, data analysis, and writing. Other duties include coordinating meetings with government officials and attending policy meetings.

Skills and attributes we seek are:

  • Strong writing and oral communications skills
  • Ability to synthesize ideas clearly and concisely
  • Ability to conduct effective interviews over the phone and in person
  • High level of competency in using Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint
  • At least some experience with public data sources like the US Census and the Bureau of Labor Statistics
  • An interest in economic development, urban planning, workforce development, and higher education issues

We prefer current graduate students or those with advanced degrees in public policy, urban planning, journalism, economics, government, social science, or related fields, though we will also consider accomplished undergraduate students. Our internship program is very competitive and attracts talented undergraduate and graduate students from across the country and around the world.

You must be able to commit to at least 20 hours a week.  This is an unpaid internship that can be used for college credit where applicable, but we provide a small stipend at the end of the internship to help offset travel expenses. Send resume with cover letter to intern@nycfuture.org.

We maintain a friendly and open working environment and encourage people of all backgrounds: age, race, ethnicity, gender, creed, and sexual orientation to apply.


The Center for an Urban Future gratefully acknowledges the support of the following foundations:

July 1, 2011 - June 30, 2012

ABNY Foundation
Bernard F. and Alva B. Gimbel Foundation
Charles H. Revson Foundation
Child Welfare Fund
F. B. Heron Foundation
Fund for the City of New York
IBM Foundation
Ira W. DeCamp Foundation
JPMorgan Chase Foundation
Kauffman Foundation
Pinkerton Foundation
UU Veatch Program
Working Poor Families Project

July 1, 2010 - June 30, 2011

Child Welfare Fund
Ira W. DeCamp Foundation
Deutsche Bank Americas Foundation
Fund for the City of New York
Bernard F. and Alva B. Gimbel Foundation
IBM Foundation
Pinkerton Foundation
Rockefeller Foundation
Staten Island Economic Development Corp.
UU Veatch Program
Working Poor Families Project