International Programs

About the Programs

NVRC’s International programs are unique.  The NVRC focuses on transferring and applying policy and technology innovations from pioneering countries that result in outcomes benefiting the economies, environment and communities of Northern Virginia.

We live in a globally interconnected world. Phenomena such as foreign trade and investment, climate change and cross-national immigration compel towns, cities, counties and regions across the United States and Virginia to respond in a strategic manner. Passive reaction by local and regional governments to global forces is no longer an option when addressing the issues of economic development, social inclusion or resiliency.

For nearly two decades, the Northern Virginia Regional Commission (NVRC), a regional council of governments representing 13 jurisdictions and 2.5 million people in Northern Virginia, has responded uniquely to these global issues. By systematically searching and applying policy and technical innovations from pioneering metropolitan regions overseas, NVRC has advanced renewable energy, mobility, watershed restoration, “green” buildings and workforce training to the benefit of communities in Northern Virginia.

It is an understatement to say that the economy and the environment of Northern Virginia have been positively transformed through NVRC’s international work. Energy and climate mitigation plans, watershed restoration strategies and the introduction of mobility improvement programs across Northern Virginia have been informed and strengthened through NVRC’s partnerships and cooperation with cities and regions such as Stuttgart, Bottrop, Copenhagen, Helsinki and Hamburg. Perhaps most relevant, NVRC’s singular focus on outcomes that strengthen Northern Virginia has created an uncommon acceptance for international work at the local and regional levels.

The core of NVRC’s international strategy consists of:

1) Unilateral transfers of policy and technology innovations from overseas to Northern Virginia that result in outcomes benefiting the economy, environment and communities of our region:

2) Selective prioritization of countries with whom NVRC works and adopts innovations (based on economic interconnections such as foreign direct investment and trade):

3) Partnerships with Northern Virginia’s commercial, academic, scientific and civil society institutions whose international programs converge with NVRC’s business model.

NVRC is proud of the role it plays as a national innovator of international partnerships at the local level.

Projects and Brochures

NVRC’s international projects and outcomes

NVRC’s International Brochure


ICMA Magazine in February 2024 published an article authored by NVRC staff and the Virginia Climate Center at George Mason University staff of our collaboration on regional sustainability and resilience projects; and our unique cooperation with the Verband Region Stuttgart in Germany.