Press & Media

CityLab Summit in Washington, D.C. Concludes with Conversations on Citizen Activism, Cities Confronting Climate Change and Improving Inequities in Maternal Health.

Today marked the conclusion of CityLab DC, a two-day summit organized by The Aspen Institute, The Atlantic, and Bloomberg Philanthropies. Over the course of the event, 125 speakers engaged in conversations across dozens of topics focusing on the greater theme of urban innovation. Sessions addressed the use of data to help communities address homelessness; gun violence in cities; affordable housing; decriminalizing poverty; the impact of technology on health and employment; scooters and the micro-mobility revolution; local problem solving; climate change; 5G and the digital divide; surveillance in cities; self-driving cars; governance within a digital city; reinvestment into cities; workers that help drive a city’s economy; city regulation around the gig economy; and the cultural impact of music.

CityLab DC Commences as Mayors, City Leaders and Activists Discuss Housing Affordability, the Future of Transportation, Inclusive Planning and Social Equity

CityLab DC, the preeminent summit on global cities organized by The Aspen InstituteThe Atlantic, and Bloomberg Philanthropies, kicked off its 7th annual two-day conference in Washington, D.C. This event brings together city leaders from around the world, along with renowned experts, to explore the challenges facing global urban centers through a diverse series of panel discussions, keynotes, workshops, and field trips. Leaders in local government, arts and culture, business, and technology joined the first day’s events to share and discuss the ways in which cities are integrating innovative approaches to tackle these challenges and improve the lives of residents.

Bloomberg Philanthropies and OECD Map Innovation Investments in Cities Worldwide

Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), released at CityLab DC a new report and interactive map that demonstrates the surge of cities’ commitment to local innovation and how these investments are set to improve outcomes for residents and strengthen communities.

Bloomberg Philanthropies Announces Replication of Mayors Challenge-Winning Early Childhood Learning Innovation in Five U.S. Cities 

Bloomberg Philanthropies announced the five American cities that will replicate Providence Talks, an early childhood education program that empowers parents and caregivers with tools to support language development at a critical age and help children enter kindergarten classroom ready. Combined with local investments, the support provided across five cities totals nearly $12 million over three years.

Bloomberg Philanthropies Announces Partnership to Scale Civic Innovation Program in Israel

Bloomberg Philanthropies announced today the launch of Hazira, a national hub for city innovation and a major new effort to accelerate civic innovation in municipalities across Israel. In partnership with the Ministry of the Interior and the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation, Hazira will scale the Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Innovation Teams (i-teams) program to 12 new cities across Israel over the course of five years and provide municipalities with the tools needed to tackle their most difficult, complex challenges.

Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative Announces Third Class of Mayors to Go Back to School

The Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative today announced the third class of forty-one mayors from around the world who will participate in the yearlong education and professional development program designed exclusively for mayors and city leaders. The forty-one mayors joined Harvard faculty and renowned management experts in New York City this week for a 3-day, immersive classroom experience to kick-off the program.

Bloomberg Philanthropies Launches New Digital Innovation Project for European Cities

Michael R. Bloomberg announced a new initiative for European capital cities that aims to accelerate digital innovation to improve critical services and deliver better results for residents. Across Europe, cities are undertaking significant efforts to embrace technology and design to transform public services and better leverage public data to solve problems. Through project support, grants, and professional development programming for Chief Digital Officers and other key leaders, Bloomberg Philanthropies aims to help European cities consolidate digital leadership – and share lessons learned with cities across the rest of the world.

Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Ballmer Group Announce Ten U.S. Cities to Join New Initiative to Increase Economic Mobility

Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Ballmer Group announced the ten American cities that will participate in a new national initiative to identify, pilot, and measure the success of interventions to accelerate economic mobility for their residents. The U.S. cities embarking on this project are: Albuquerque, NM; Cincinnati, OH; Dayton, OH; Detroit, MI; Lansing, MI; New Orleans, LA; Newark, NJ; Racine, WI; Rochester, NY; and Tulsa, OK.

Bloomberg Philanthropies Announces the American Cities Best at Using Data to Improve Residents’ Lives in 2019

Bloomberg Philanthropies announced the seven cities to achieve 2019 What Works Cities Certification, a national standard of excellence in city governance. What Works Cities Certification rates how well cities are managed by measuring the extent to which city leaders incorporate data and evidence in their decision-making. This year, the Certification recognizes Arlington, TX; Kansas City, MO; Louisville, KY; Memphis, TN; Philadelphia, PA; Scottsdale, AZ; and Washington, DC.

Bloomberg Philanthropies Announces New Collaboration with the OECD to Advance Innovation in Municipalities Around the World

Bloomberg Philanthropies today announced a new partnership with the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) that will measure the impact of city innovation on the lives of urban residents around the world at the 4th meeting of the OECD Champion Mayors Initiative for Inclusive Growth in Athens.  James Anderson, Head of Government Innovation at Bloomberg Philanthropies, joined Jose Angel Gurria Trevino, Secretary General of the OECD, this week to reveal the new collaboration.

Bloomberg Philanthropies, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Ballmer Group Announce Joint Project to Increase Economic Mobility in Local Communities

Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Ballmer Group announced a new $12 million project that will help communities analyze economic mobility in American cities and develop interventions that can increase residents’ economic progress. The project will work to identify barriers to economic mobility, understand the impact of potential interventions, and share what works.

Nine Cities Win $1 Million for Innovative Solutions to Urgent Local Issues in Bloomberg Philanthropies’ U.S. Mayors Challenge

Michael R. Bloomberg announced at CityLab Detroit the nine winners of the Bloomberg Philanthropies U.S. Mayors Challenge, a yearlong competition that challenged city leaders to uncover and test bold, inventive ideas to confront the toughest problems faced by cities today. The nine cities will receive $1 million to begin implementation on potentially breakthrough solutions to homelessness, the opioid crisis, mobility, climate change, and economic opportunity.

Mike Bloomberg Names Seattle and Atlanta First Winners in American Cities Climate Challenge

Today, UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Climate Action and former New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg joined Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan in Seattle’s Kerry Park to announce Seattle and Atlanta as the first round of winning cities for the Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge. The Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge is a $70 million dollar program that will accelerate 20 ambitious cities’ efforts to tackle climate change and promote a sustainable future for residents. Through the Climate Challenge – which is part of Bloomberg’s American Cities Initiative, a suite of more than $200 million in investments to strengthen city halls and advance critical policies – Seattle and Atlanta are accepted into a two-year acceleration program, will be provided powerful new resources and access to cutting-edge support to help meet or beat the cities’ near-term carbon reduction goals.

Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative Announces Second Class of Mayors Go Back to School

The Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative announced the second class of forty mayors from around the world who will participate in the yearlong education and professional development program designed exclusively for mayors. The forty mayors joined Harvard faculty and renowned management experts in New York City this week for a 3-day, immersive classroom experience and convening to kick-off the program.

Mike Bloomberg’s Annual Letter on Philanthropy says Mayors and Data are Antidote to Washington’s Divisive Assault on Facts

In a letter on philanthropy released today as part of Bloomberg Philanthropies’ annual report, Mike Bloomberg says Washington’s “direct assault on facts and data is making it harder for America to address major challenges here and around the world,” including areas in which Bloomberg Philanthropies whose work is driven by reliable data is working to improve and save lives. However, a “counter-assault” is underway, Bloomberg writes: “As Washington has grown more dysfunctional, American cities have grown more dynamic. Mayors in both parties are leading where Washington won’t,” enthusiastically using data, and working with members of other political parties, to improve government performance for their citizens.

Bloomberg Philanthropies Selects Top 35 Innovative Urban Ideas as Finalists in 2018 Mayors Challenge

Bloomberg Philanthropies announced the 35 Champion Cities in the 2018 U.S. Mayors Challenge, a nationwide competition that encourages city leaders to uncover bold, inventive ideas that confront the toughest problems cities face. These 35 urban innovations rose to the top of a competitive pool of more than 320 applications. The Champion Cities will now begin a six-month testing phase where they will conduct public prototypes of their ideas with grant funding of up to $100,000 per city, a new addition to the competition this year.

Bloomberg Philanthropies Announces the American Cities Best at Using Data to Improve Residents’ Lives

Bloomberg Philanthropies announced the inaugural group of nine cities to achieve What Works Cities Certification, a first-of-its-kind national standard of excellence in city governance. What Works Cities Certification rates how well cities are managed by measuring the extent to which city leaders incorporate data and evidence in their decision-making. The certification recognizes Boston, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Louisville, New Orleans, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington, D.C for their proven leadership in data-driven government. Through What Works Cities, the nine cities will each receive additional expert assistance to accelerate progress and deepen their leadership in using data.

Bloomberg Philanthropies Announces 2017 Mayors Challenge Selection Committee Co-Chaired by Former Ambassador Caroline Kennedy and Former Xerox Chairman & CEO Ursula Burns

Bloomberg Philanthropies announced the selection committee for the 2017 U.S. Mayors Challenge, a nationwide competition that encourages city leaders to think big, be bold, and uncover inventive ideas that confront the toughest problems U.S. cities currently face. More than 320 cities are taking part in this year’s competition, the fourth Mayors Challenge Bloomberg Philanthropies has held since 2013. Former U.S. Ambassador Caroline Kennedy and Former Xerox Chairman and CEO Ursula Burns will co-chair the selection committee, which is comprised of distinguished policy experts, artists, academics, business executives and social innovation leaders, that will choose the winning cities.

Bloomberg Philanthropies Launches First-Ever Autonomous Vehicles Map, A Living Inventory of Cities Planning for a Driverless Future

Bloomberg Philanthropies released its Global Atlas of Autonomous Vehicles (AV) in Cities, a comprehensive, first-of-its kind map that shows how city governments around the globe are preparing for the transition to AVs. As of today, the project highlights 53 cities working towards the transformation to a driverless future by hosting industry tests, organizing their own pilots and developing proactive policies and plans.  The map will be updated regularly with new developments and cities are invited to submit their work. The Atlas will be a critical resource for cities to learn from one another and share best practices.

Global Digital Education Leaders Convene in Paris to Define and Evaluate Student Outcomes

Embracing a global competency agenda —integrating new concepts and skills into school curricula to give students the skills and the habits of mind they need to be successful in tomorrow’s workforce and the global future—is the topic of a symposium sponsored by Global Cities, Inc., A Program of Bloomberg Philanthropies. Global Cities is hosting the conference in collaboration with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), which will start testing for global competence among 15-year-olds in 80 countries in its 2018 PISA exams. The conference is also a side event of this year’s Paris CityLab meetings.

555 Cities Join Bloomberg Philanthropies’ U.S. Mayors Challenge to Tackle Urgent Urban Problems and Improve City Life

Bloomberg Philanthropies announced that 555 cities – from all 50 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico – have entered the 2017 Mayors Challenge, a nationwide ideas competition for U.S. cities. This represents the highest-ever number of entrants for the Challenge, underscoring an urgency from city leaders to identify and solve the most critical issues of the day.

Mayor Pugh, Governor Hogan, Goldman Sachs and Bloomberg Philanthropies Announce $10 Million Commitment for Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses in Baltimore

Baltimore Mayor Catherine E. Pugh, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, Founder of Bloomberg L.P. and Bloomberg Philanthropies Michael R. Bloomberg and Goldman Sachs Chairman and CEO Lloyd C. Blankfein announced a $10 million commitment to continue Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses in Baltimore to help create jobs and economic growth. This $10 million commitment in Baltimore, a co-investment between Goldman Sachs and Bloomberg Philanthropies, marks the first-ever co-investment in the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program, which provides a practical business education and access to capital and for small business owners.

Bloomberg Philanthropies Partners with La 27e Région to Expand Innovation Teams in France

Bloomberg Philanthropies announced the expansion of its Innovation Teams (“i-teams”) program to 10 local governments within France, including the cities of Paris, Mulhouse, and Dunkerque, the Occitanie Region, and six additional cities to come. The program helps city leaders drive innovation, change culture, and tackle big problems – from economic development to citizen engagement – to improve the lives of the people they serve.

Michael R. Bloomberg Announces $200 Million American Cities Initiative to Help U.S. Cities Innovate, Solve Problems, and Work Together in New Ways

In an address at the U.S. Conference of Mayors’ Annual Meeting in Miami, Michael R. Bloomberg announced the American Cities Initiative, a suite of new and expanded investments that will empower cities to generate innovation and advance policy that moves the nation forward.

Bloomberg Philanthropies Announces First-Ever National Standard for Data-Driven Local Government

Bloomberg Philanthropies announced What Works Cities Certification, a new effort which will publicly recognize the municipal governments that most effectively use data to allocate resources and improve residents’ lives. A team of national experts will assess each city’s data practices, and then award cities with a “platinum,” “gold” or “silver” certification status for achieving excellence in applying data to how they govern. Like a Good Housekeeping Seal or ENERGY STAR rating for data-driven governance, What Works Cities Certification will provide cities with a new, rigorous benchmark to assess their own practices against.

Bloomberg Philanthropies Expands Innovation Teams Program to Seven New Cities Across the Globe

Bloomberg Philanthropies announced that seven cities across the globe have been selected for the latest expansion of its Innovation Teams program. The program helps City Halls drive bold innovation, change culture, and tackle big problems to deliver better results for residents. Multi-year grants will be awarded to help cities create better results for a range of pressing problems – from tackling poverty and neighborhood revitalization to recruiting and retaining public employees. Cities include Be’er Sheva in Israel; Toronto in Canada, and Anchorage, AK; Austin, TX; Baltimore, MD; Detroit, MI; and Durham; NC in the United States.

Five More Cities Join Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Aspen Institute’s Global Initiative on Autonomous Vehicles

Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Aspen Institute announced that five cities have joined its global initiative to help city leaders plan and prepare for the emergence of autonomous vehicles. The cities of Helsinki, Finland; London, England; São Paulo, Brazil; Tel Aviv, Israel and Washington, D.C., USA will join the inaugural participants of the Bloomberg Aspen Initiative on Cities and Autonomous Vehicles announced last fall. Over the course of the next year, the multi-city cohort will produce a set of principles and tools that cities around the world can use to chart their own paths forward with the new technology.

City of São Paulo Selected as the 2016 Grand Prize Winner in Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Latin American and Caribbean Mayors Challenge

Bloomberg Philanthropies announced the winners of its 2016 Mayors Challenge, an ideas competition that encourages cities to generate innovative ideas that solve major challenges and improve city life – and have the potential to spread. After a year-long competitive process alongside their peers, five cities emerged as winners based on four criteria: their idea’s vision and creativity, potential for impact, transferability, and viability of implementation.

Bloomberg Philanthropies’ What Works Cities Initiative More than Halfway to Goal of Supporting 100 Mid-Sized US Cities

Bloomberg Philanthropies’ announced that its What Works Cities initiative has reached a critical benchmark: 55 mid-sized U.S. cities are now working to better use data and evidence to improve services for residents, inform local decision making, and engage citizens. All together these 55 cities come from 33 states, represent 19 million residents, and have annual budgets exceeding $63 billion.

Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Aspen Institute Launch First Global Initiative to Help Leading Cities Prepare for the Advent of Autonomous Vehicles

Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Aspen Institute announced the Bloomberg Aspen Initiative on Cities and Autonomous Vehicles, a new program for leading global mayors who will work together to prepare their cities for the emergence of autonomous vehicles. Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Aspen Institute will galvanize experts and data to accelerate cities’ planning efforts, and produce a set of principles and tools that participating cities, as well as cities around the world, can use to chart their own paths forward. The inaugural cities in the initiative include Austin, USA; Buenos Aires, Argentina; Los Angeles, USA; Paris, France; and Nashville, USA. Five additional cities will be announced later this year.