Bloomberg Philanthropies Welcomes 20 New Mayors to the City Data Alliance, Empowering Them to Lead with Data to Improve Resident Lives
New York, NY & Baltimore, MD – Bloomberg Philanthropies today announced that 20 mayors from North and South America will join the Bloomberg Philanthropies City Data Alliance. As part of the Alliance, the mayors will receive executive education and coaching on how to leverage data to strengthen city government operations, innovate public services, and produce better outcomes for residents including improving access to health care, reimagining waste management systems, expanding affordable housing, or combatting homelessness. To kick off their participation, the 20 mayors—representing 11 U.S. and 9 Latin American cities—will meet with Michael R. Bloomberg and renowned data leaders in academia, innovation, urban governance, social impact, and racial equity at Johns Hopkins University over the course of a three-day immersion. Together, the mayors will make a shared, public commitment to use data to better understand and more effectively deliver on community needs.
“These 20 mayors were selected because of their leadership using data to inform decision-making and respond to challenges, and this program will help them take that work to the next level,” said Michael R. Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg LP and Bloomberg Philanthropies and 108th mayor of New York City. “The Bloomberg Philanthropies City Data Alliance provides tools, support, and peer networking to help mayors achieve their goals by using data even more effectively.”
The new 20 Bloomberg Philanthropies City Data Alliance mayors come from five countries and include:
- Mayor Ulpiano Suárez of Mendoza, AR
- Mayor João Henrique Caldas of Maceió, BR
- Mayor Caio Cunha of Mogi das Cruzes, BR
- Mayor Axel Schmidt Grael of Niteroí, BR
- Mayor João Campos of Recife, BR
- Mayor Gerardo Alfredo Espíndola Rojas of Arica, CL
- Mayor Daniela Peñaloza Ramos of Las Condes, CL
- Mayor Tomas Vodanovic of Maipú, CL
- Mayor Janet Isabel Cubas Carranza of Chiclayo, PE
The United States:
- Mayor Bryon Brown of Buffalo, NY
- Mayor Vi Lyles of Charlotte, NC
- Mayor Daniel Brotman of Glendale, CA
- Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba of Jackson, MS
- Mayor Frank Scott, Jr. of Little Rock, AR
- Mayor Steven Reed of Montgomery, AL
- Mayor Malik Evans of Rochester, NY
- Mayor Bruce Harrell of Seattle, WA
- Mayor Paul TenHaken of Sioux Falls, SD
- Mayor Ben Walsh of Syracuse, NY
- Mayor Muriel Bowser of Washington, D.C.
In cities with advanced data practices – which includes using stakeholder engagement, evaluation tools, and performance analytics to inform decision-making – residents report higher satisfaction and well-being than those without. Established in 2022 through a $60 million investment from Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Bloomberg Philanthropies City Data Alliance helps more cities across North, Central, and South America with populations of 100,000 or more reach this advanced data standard to better resident outcomes. The addition of the 20 new cities brings the total number of those accepted into the Bloomberg Philanthropies City Data Alliance to 42 cities across seven countries.
At the meeting kick off, mayors will engage with and receive keynote instruction from global experts from Bloomberg Philanthropies, Johns Hopkins University, Harvard University, Cornell Tech, and the federal government, as well as mayors and senior city data leaders from the first City Data Alliance cohort. They include:
- Denice Ross, U.S. Chief Data Scientist for the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy
- Beth Blauer, Associate Vice Provost for Public Sector Innovation at Johns Hopkins University
- Amy Edwards Holmes, Executive Director of the Bloomberg Center for Government Excellence at Johns Hopkins University
- Jorrit de Jong, Director, Bloomberg Center for Cities at Harvard University; Emma Bloomberg Senior Lecturer in Public Policy and Management, Harvard Kennedy School; and Faculty Co-Chair, Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative
- Garnesha Ezediaro, who leads Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Greenwood Initiative, and led the launch of the Black Wealth Data Center
- Mayor Brandon Scott and Chief Data Officer Justin Elszasz of Baltimore, Maryland
- Mayor G.T. Bynum of Tulsa, Oklahoma
“The Bloomberg Philanthropies City Data Alliance is the premier global forum for city leaders to improve their data practices and expand their use of data to create more responsive policies, increase equity, and improve the lives of city residents,” said Amy Holmes, Executive Director of the Bloomberg Center for Government Excellence at Johns Hopkins University. “We are thrilled to welcome the new cohort of innovative leaders to Baltimore and to Johns Hopkins University, where Bloomberg Philanthropies has helped to create one of the world’s foremost centers working to advance the use of data in local governance.”
“Data is one of the most critical assets public sector leaders have — and the Bloomberg Philanthropies City Data Alliance is aimed at helping maximize that asset for public good,” said James Anderson, who leads the Government Innovation program at Bloomberg Philanthropies. “As we learned during COVID-19, good data – leveraged effectively – can make the difference between life and death. We are excited to help these 20 cities set a new standard of excellence.”
Already, cities’ work as part of the Bloomberg Philanthropies City Data Alliance has resulted in:
- The creation of a new centralized city data platform in Montevideo, Uruguay which informed national efforts to expand access to medical services – such as extending clinic hours – in the Casavalle area, where 30 percent of residents live below the poverty line, resulting in helping over 6,000 community members see a doctor.
- A Data Governance Charter in the city of Scottsdale, Arizona and a data leadership team comprised of senior leaders from the largest divisions, including planning and economic development, police, treasury, and human resources. The team provides guidance, support, and data course certifications to upskill city staff across over 40 departments on data literacy and leadership, analytics and business intelligence, and data privacy and protection.
- The formation of a citywide data strategy in Fortaleza, Brazil which was immediately applied to a pressing resident issue: garbage collection. The city established a new waste management policy based on a common, data-informed framework where department heads track over 49 indicators to monitor the new program. The solution is helping the city keep neighborhoods cleaner and improve residents’ quality of life.
“Our work with – and as part of – Bloomberg Philanthropies City Data Alliance culminated in efforts we could put into practice,” said Mayor Corey Woods of Tempe, Arizona. “In turn, our residents felt the impact of these efforts, each and every day. Whether developing systems to support homeless solutions or using community insight to inform library services and programs, the City Data Alliance is supporting cities – as they did ours – in leveraging data to listen and connect with residents, and build and measure solutions that improve the lives of residents.”
“Our city’s experience as part of Bloomberg Philanthropies City Data Alliance empowered us to understand that data is far more than a number set,” said Mayor Sharon Weston Broome of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. “In fact, it is one of the most powerful tools local governments have to build trusting relationships with community members and identify new ways of solving resident-level issues. I applaud Bloomberg Philanthropies for continuing to expand the work – and members – of the City Data Alliance, and welcome the new set of mayors as they too broaden and deepen the ways in which data can help them deliver for the people they serve.”
“Cities must make data central to their work, and that’s exactly what the Bloomberg Philanthropies City Data Alliance helps cities to do,” said Mayor Ron Nirenberg of San Antonio, Texas. “I am proud to be part of the City Data Alliance, and join Bloomberg Philanthropies in welcoming – and celebrating – its expansion with 20 new mayors and cities joining this collective. Being part of the City Data Alliance means having access to expertise, peers across the Americas, and dedicated support to build citywide data strategies based on listening to resident needs and developing community-based programs.”
“The Bloomberg Philanthropies City Data Alliance has helped me see sources of information where I used to see data, strengthening my own work—and that of my team—to deepen how we use data to listen and respond to community needs and forge relationships with residents,” said Mayor Carolina Cosse of Montevideo, Uruguay. “In that sense, being part of the City Data Alliance provides city halls with more than a toolkit. It’s a new way of thinking, working, and delivering, that places insight at the center of a city’s operations, which has become, in our city, the fabric of how we do business across agencies and entities with a direct impact on citizens.”
The suite of supports provided to cities in the City Data Alliance helps mayors and their senior teams deepen their use of data to inform decisions, transform systems, understand impact, and communicate results. Targets are set so cities have a comprehensive plan and process to ask tough questions, invest in proven practices, innovate their approaches, evaluate progress, and establish new policies and standards to ensure the work is sustained. Cities also receive up to 12 months of customized technical assistance, inclusive of both structured classroom sessions and individualized city coaching, to improve a critical data practice such as performance management, procurement, evaluation, or data as a service – an approach for cities to design or present data that bolsters cross-government decision-making or resident engagement.
The Bloomberg Philanthropies City Data Alliance is delivered in partnership with the Bloomberg Center for Government Excellence (GovEx) at Johns Hopkins University along with the Harvard Kennedy School Government Performance Lab, the Behavioral Insights Team, and Public Digital. The City Data Alliance aligns and builds on the success of the Bloomberg Philanthropies What Works Cities Certification, led by Results for America, a first-of-its-kind standard of excellence for data-informed, well-managed local government.
For more information on the Bloomberg Philanthropies City Data Alliance – or to apply – click here.
About Bloomberg Philanthropies:
Bloomberg Philanthropies invests in 700 cities and 150 countries around the world to ensure better, longer lives for the greatest number of people. The organization focuses on five key areas for creating lasting change: the Arts, Education, Environment, Government Innovation, and Public Health. Bloomberg Philanthropies encompasses all of Michael R. Bloomberg’s giving, including his foundation, corporate, and personal philanthropy as well as Bloomberg Associates, a pro bono consultancy that works in cities around the world. In 2022, Bloomberg Philanthropies distributed US$ 1.7 billion. For more information, please visit bloomberg.org, sign up for our newsletter, or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
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