Austin and the London Borough of Hackney have established a Sister City agreement to foster exchange in the areas of high-tech and digital media, the creative industries, economic development, and sustainability.

Hackney is home to Tech City, London’s hub of tech innovation and entrepreneurship. Digital Shoreditch, a burgeoning digital and creative tech festival, is held in Hackney every May. Hackney also hosted many events in the 2012 Olympic Games. Austin's initial Friendship City agreement with Hackney was signed during a digital media trade mission to London led by Mayor Leffingwell in January 2012. The two cities became Sister Cities in 2014, with Mayor Leffingwell traveling on the inaugural Austin-London non-stop flight and participating in a signing ceremony with Hackney Mayor Jules Pipe on March 5, 2014.

Partnership Outcomes:

  • Hackney Council created Hackney House Austin during SXSW 2013 and SXSW 2014 to showcase Hackney businesses and the Austin-Hackney relationship.
  • An Austin "Love-In" at BL-NK in Hackney during Internet Weeek Europe. Austin businesses can also use the BL-NK co-working space as a home base while traveling in London.
  • Hackney's Olympics web presence was studied as a best practice in the development of
  • Mayor Lee Leffingwell's sustainable development panel during SXSW Eco 2012 focused on government efforts to incentivize targeted industry investments into Austin and Hackney.

Additional Information:

Please contact Fred Schmidt and Andy Jones for more information about the Austin-Hackney sister city relationship. More information can also be found at

See the complete list of Austin's friendship cities at the Sister and Friendship Cities Program main page.