Progressive Local Government for the 21st Century


ProGov2l is a fully searchable digital library of progressive policies and practices for local government. As used here, “progressive” means simply and only “advancing shared well-being with respect for all”; “local government” means any non-federal and non-state public entity with power (counties, cities, villages and towns, but also commissions, authorities, and districts).

ProGov21 includes laws and suggested laws, ballot measures, executive orders and regulations, but also policy analyses, case studies, factsheets, and other materials (soon video!) to help in their communication and advocacy. The library is open to the general public but targeted at progressive  elected officials, candidates, policymakers, advocacy groups and citizen activists.

ProGov2l is operated and maintained by COWS, a national think-and-do tank based at University of Wisconsin-Madison. COWS researches and promotes “high-road” solutions to social problems – an approach to social and economic development the treats inclusive and shared opportunity and reward, environmental sustainability and capable resilient democratic institutions as necessary and achievable complements (not “tragic tradeoffs”) in such development – and in this world not an imagined one.

The resources available on ProGov21 come from many different organizations and people working on a wide array of issues that local governments of different jurisdictions and powers regularly confront. While COWS staff works daily to update, curate and enlarge the ProGov21 library, its usefulness critically depends on user-generated or user-referred content from others. So while we hope PoGov21 will be widely used public good, we also need your help in building and maintaining it.


  • If you have useful material you think should be here but isn’t, please contribute it (see Submit Material); and
  • If you have any comments on the site or any suggestions for improvement (especially ones you’re willing to help implement), please use the comment form below; and
  • If you can contribute money to this effort, that’d be nice too! (see Donations)