Using Innovation and Technology to Improve City Services
In this report, Professor Greenberg examines a dozen cities across the United States that have award-winning reputations for using innovation and technology to improve the services they provide to their residents. She explores a variety of success factors associated with effective service delivery at the local level, including:
- The policies, platforms, and applications that cities use for different purposes, such as public engagement, streamlining the issuance of permits, and emergency response
- How cities can successfully partner with third parties, such as nonprofits, foundations, universities, and private businesses to improve service delivery using technology
- The types of business cases that can be presented to mayors and city councils to support various changes proposed by innovators in city government
Professor Greenberg identifies a series of trends that drive cities to undertake innovations, such as the increased use of mobile devices by residents. Based on cities’ responses to these trends, she offers a set of findings and specific actions that city officials can act upon to create innovation agendas for their communities. Her report also presents case studies for each of the dozen cities in her review. These cases provide a real-world context, which will allow interested leaders in other cities to see how their own communities might approach similar innovation initiatives.
This report builds on two other IBM Center reports: A Guide for Making Innovation Offices Work, by Rachel Burstein and Alissa Black, and The Persistence of Innovation in Government: A Guide for Public Servants, by Sandford Borins, which examines the use of awards to stimulate innovation in government.
We hope that government leaders who are interested in innovations using technology to improve services will benefit from the governance models and tools described in this report, as they consider how best to leverage innovation and technology initiatives to serve residents more effectively and efficiently.