Cities in the global south face a stark inequality challenge. Many struggle to provide basic economic opportunities to rapidly growing populations, leading to widespread informality, precarious livelihoods and widening income gaps. More equitable approaches to economic development are needed, but practical measures are rarely discussed. Local governments, the informally working poor and experts will identify realistic paths to create fairer and more vibrant economies in rapidly urbanising, under-resourced cities. Participants will address the “equitable growth challenge” based on insights from the Cities Alliance’s Joint Work Programme for Equitable Economic Growth in Cities, which is dedicated to improving access to public goods and services as a pathway to more vibrant, inclusive and sustainable city economies.