Since 2007, we’ve been honored to convene the children and nature movement at grassroots gatherings, international conferences and leadership summits. Like you, we believe that the well-being of children and the wild places we love are inextricably linked. But today’s kids continue to be less connected to nature than ever before.

This is why we gather—as leaders, educators, practitioners and parents—to turn this trend “Inside-Out”.

Inside-Out reflects the work you do every day to change the way we think about nature connection. And, you’ll still benefit from the incredible peer networking, keynote speeches and hands-on workshops that you’ve come to expect from annual Children & Nature Network conferences and summits. We can’t wait to turn the world Inside-Out with you!

2020 Presenting Sponsor

2020 Leadership Summit: Where & When

The 2020 Children & Nature Network Inside-Out Leadership Summit will be held May 7 – 8, 2020 at the Atlanta Hyatt Regency, 265 Peachtree Street NE, Atlanta, Georgia 3030. A block of discounted rooms will be available at the Hyatt.

Schedule Overview

DAY 1: Thursday, May 7, 8:30 am – 5:00 pm Action Areas
DAY 1: Thursday, May 7, 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm Networking Reception
DAY 2: Friday, May 8, 8:00 am – 4:00 pm Leadership Workshops

How will Summit Participants Work Together?

The Leadership Summit provides a forum for strategically selected leaders to come together to share ideas and recommend next steps for collective impact. Through an application process, leaders will be selected to represent diverse perspectives, skills, voices, disciplines and approaches to connecting children to nature. Participants will be capped at 400 to facilitate productive action areas. The Summit will be guided by core themes of diversity, equity, inclusion, cultural relevancy and evidence-based solutions.

Summit Action Areas

Applicants to the Summit can choose from the following Action Areas:

  • Health & Nature: This session, in partnership with the Salzburg Global Seminar, will explore ways nature access can impact national public health, well-being, mental health and health equity. Recommended for: health care providers, policy planners, community development leaders and practitioners, city leadership, researchers.
  • Green Schoolyards: We will focus on activating the Green Schoolyards Action Agenda’s vision that “All U.S. communities offer access to green schoolyards by 2050 to enhance children’s healthy development, community wellbeing and positive environmental impacts.” Recommended for:  community leaders, city representatives, school districts, health departments, park districts, and nonprofits interested in green schoolyards as a strategy for nature access.
  • Youth Development: We will explore best practices and strategies to combine youth development and nature-based programs towards a common goal of supporting the positive growth and social emotional learning of young people. Recommended for: leaders and providers of nature-based programs (environmental education, conservation) and/or youth leadership and development programs.
  • Advancing State Policy: This group will bring together attendees working to implement policy around equitable connections to nature on a state, federal or municipal level. The working group will review a policy playbook, discuss strategies and define the most effective tools to activate policy initiatives across the country. Recommended for: leaders currently working to influence policy on a state, federal or municipal level.
  • International Action: In collaboration with #NatureForAll, this group will explore the most promising opportunities to connect children with nature at a global scale. We will develop an action plan to increase the collective impact and influence with a focus on health and wellbeing, cities, childhood development, and international policy. Recommended for: leaders and practitioners from outside the US and US-based practitioners interested in partnering internationally.
  • City Government: This working group will engage city leadership teams that are advancing the role of city government in increasing equitable access to nature with a focus on partnerships, funding models, and partnership planning. (By invitation only)

Detailed Schedule

DAY 1: Thursday, May 7 | 8:30 am – 5:00 pm | Action Areas

Action Areas will discuss key needs for their focus areas and identify strategies to meet those needs. Recommendations from each action areas will drive programmatic and policy work in communities around the world and inform planning for the 2021 Inside-Out International Conference, to be held June 3-5 2021, in Atlanta.

DAY 2: Friday May 8 | 8:00 am – 4:00 pm | Leadership Workshops

Summit participants will participate in cross-cutting discussions to further refine outcomes from Day 1 action area. Attendees will also participate in leadership workshops designed to advance the children and nature movement and provide practical tools and resources to further their own individual and/or organizational bodies of work.

Cost (in U.S. Dollars)

  • 2020 Summit registration fee: $395.00
  • Young leaders (up to age 30) reduced registration fee: $250
  • Breakfast and lunch are included in your registration fee, both days.
  • Participants will cover their own hotel and travel expenses.
  • A block of discounted rooms is available at the Hyatt for $179/night.


All scholarships have been awarded. Recipients were selected according to the following criteria:

  • Demonstrated need for financial assistance.
  • Potential to benefit from attending the Summit and capacity to give back to their communities and/or grow the children and nature movement.
  • Representation from marginalized or underrepresented groups.
  • A minimum of five registration and five travel scholarships to young leaders under 30.

The Inside-Out 2-Year Residency

In 2018, C&NN moved to a 2-year residency model for our leadership summits and international conferences. After identifying a host city engaged in exemplary work to connect children to nature, we host a 2-year residency in that city, beginning with a leadership summit in year one. Leadership summits convene action areas of changemakers, thoughtfully selected through an application process to represent the diverse points-of-view, people and disciplines of the children and nature movement. In year two, we host an international conference, open to all, and now the largest gathering of the children and nature leaders in the world. This model allows for both intensive agenda setting and strategic planning at leadership summits — and broad engagement and activation at international conferences. Throughout our 2-year partnership with host cities, we work to support and elevate local efforts to increase equitable access to nature, and provide technical assistance and national partner connections to advance host city goals.

2021 Inside-Out International Conference:

June 3 – 5, 2021
Atlanta Hyatt Regency, Atlanta, GA

Outcomes from the 2020 Leadership Summit will drive programming for the 2021 International Conference, open to all. This premier gathering of the children and nature movement will feature inspiring keynotes, hands-on workshops and peer networking opportunities for up to 1,000 sector-disciplinary leaders who are making real progress in increasing equitable access to nature in their communities.