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June 9, 2015


June 9 2015 - What Works Cities, the newest Bloomberg Philanthropies initiative designed to help mid-size cities expand their use of data and evidence, announced that more than 100 cities have already applied to participate in What Works Cities, demonstrating the strong demand from city leaders for on-the-ground support in expanding their use of data and evidence.

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May 29 2015 - "We're wired to behave as others do," says Elspeth Kirkman, a director at Behavioral Insights Team, which originated in the UK as the original "nudge unit." "On a primitive level, maybe if you didn't do what the others did you got eaten by the sabre tooth." Kirkman and her team are now coming to the United States as part of a $42 million effort by Bloomberg Philanthropies to help cities more effectively use data. 

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May-June 2015 - The Center for Government Excellence at Johns Hopkins, established with a grant from Bloomberg Philanthropies, aims to assist more than 100 U.S. cities in using data to transform the way their governments operate. The Center is part of the university's 21st Century Cities Initiative that brings together city leaders and top researchers to confront the pressing needs of revitalizing cities throughout the country and abroad.

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May 20 2015 - Cities are gaining momentum as incubators for innovation. There is much excitement about the idea of cities as “laboratories of democracy.” As a result, cities can learn best practices from one another. Sharing this information can build a strong foundation to amplify and encourage experimentation.

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Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg believes so firmly in the promise of open data that his foundation is putting up $42 million to help cities along, stating “the possibilities for how cities can use that data to improve lives—and improve the way services are provided to citizens—are limitless.”

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April 22, 2015

CityLab: 3 Cities Using Open Data in Creative Ways to Solve Problems

By Tanvi Misra - On the heels of Bloomberg's $42 million open data initiative, here's a few programs already boosting civic reform.


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With the goal of helping midsize cities with between a hundred thousand and a million people solve problems and improve services for residents, the initiative will provide local leaders with technical assistance, expertise, and peer-to-peer learning opportunities designed to help them incorporate data into their budget, operational, and policy decision making; conduct low-cost, real-time assessments that enable them to continually improve their services; and focus funding on approaches that deliver results for citizens.

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April 21, 2015

GOVTECH: Bloomberg's 'What Works Cities' Initiative Targets 100 Mid-Sized Metros

By Colin Wood - “The criteria are pretty broad,” [said Jim Anderson, head of Government Innovation Programs for Bloomberg Philanthropies]. “We’re looking for cities that have leaders that are committed to using data to improve results for residents. We’re looking for cities that are data pros and data novices alike. There’s something here for any city that wants to go deeper and build on existing efforts.”

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MAYOR OF THE WORLD-- MIKE BLOOMBERG on HuffPo, “Why I’m Betting on Cities and Data”: “Bloomberg Philanthropies is launching a new national program called What Works Cities. It is the most comprehensive effort yet to help city leaders use data and evidence in their decision-making to improve the lives of residents. The $42 million program will do that by offering technical support and guidance to cities who want to do more with data.”

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April 20, 2015

Bloomberg Philanthropies Launches $42 Million “What Works Cities” Initiative

NEW YORK – Today, Bloomberg Philanthropies announced the launch of the What Works Cities initiative, a $42 million program to help 100 mayors and local leaders use data and evidence to engage the public, make government more effective and improve people’s lives. What Works Cities is the most comprehensive initiative to help city halls use data and evidence effectively. U.S. cities with populations between 100,000 and 1 million people are invited to apply.

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