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CivicMakers is a strategic consultancy and community of practitioners that believes in the power of inclusive, collaborative design. We envision a world where every person has the tools, skills, and confidence to advance collaborative decision-making.

CivicMakers began as a way to bring people together around shared opportunities and challenges in the civic space, and has grown to be a leading human-centered design firm in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond. We partner with governments, nonprofits, and mission-driven companies to unearth human insights and co-create solutions to public challenges. We specialize in strategic planning, community engagement, and program and service design.

With decades of interdisciplinary work in the public sector, our team of pragmatic optimists approaches even the stickiest problems with thoughtfulness, rigor, and an open mind, building lasting relationships along the way. Keep going to learn more about our story, our approach and our team.



Context-sensitive and open-minded, driven by community.

Our approach to creative, collaborative problem-solving recognizes the important knowledge held by multiple stakeholders, as well as the organizations and systems within which they are trying to create change. As such, we adapt to different contexts, and make sure we design with communities, not for them.

We use methodologies like human-centered design and systems thinking to ensure we deliver useful insights and solutions that resonate with those they are intended to serve. We know that when diverse voices are meaningfully engaged in decision-making, everyone benefits.

CivicMakers Team of eight stands in front of a mural.


A passionate,
experienced team of pragmatic optimists

Our team brings multidisciplinary experience and perspective from across the public, private, and social sectors to our clients. We’ve been doing this long enough to know what works and what’s possible.

We also bring our whole hearts and full selves to this work because we believe in the promise of government. Seeing collaborative decision-making really work makes our hearts sing. What can we say? We truly love what we do.


“CivicMakers was instrumental in helping us explore new innovative practices. With their help, we were able to experiment with cutting-edge techniques to engage the public and improve services.”

Matthias Jaime Director, San Francisco Committee on Information Technology (former)