Bloomberg Philanthropies announced Tuesday 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, according to the organization.
“Mayors are eager to find new ways to put data to work on all the big challenges we face – and that’s why we created the What Works Cities program,” said Michael R. Bloomberg, the former three-term mayor of New York City. “What Works Cities is helping cities use data to save money, time, and resources – and it is producing powerful results across the country.”
The Certification program will build on the success of participating cities, which are using performance management, open data, performance-based contracting and behavioral insights to deliver better results for their residents.
What Work Cities, launched in April 2015, is one of the largest-ever philanthropic efforts to enhance cities’ use of data and evidence.