Gainesville Selected to Join National "What Works Cities" Initiative


The City of Gainesville is now one of five new cities to participate in the Bloomberg Philanthropies’ “What Works Cities” initiative – one of the largest philanthropic efforts to enhance the use of data and evidence in the public sector.

Local issues that will be addressed through the initiative include best practices in data management and performance analytics that support transportation and business life cycle improvements. This effort is part of a partnership announced earlier this year with the University of Florida that aims to help transform Gainesville into the “next great American City.”

With support from a consortium of expert partners, the “What Works Cities” identifies more effective ways to evaluate programs and improve performance; provide access to best use resources to serve local communities; and address a range of social challenges – from public safety to affordable housing. “What Works Cities” participants also join the initiative’s extensive learning network of local leaders and global experts who actively share best practices for outcomes-focused government.

Gainesville will improve open data practices in order to make municipal data more accessible and engage residents around government priorities and services.  The city will also establish and improve performance management programs to set, track and share progress toward priority goals, strengthen accountability and achieve better results.

“With the help of world-class experts in a number of fields, Gainesville is incorporating new ways of engaging our citizens into collaborative decision making processes,” said Anthony Lyons, Gainesville city manager.  “Through data driven decisions and performance measures, we will continue to lead the way in being the next great American city.”

The consortium of expert organizations assembled by Bloomberg Philanthropies to deliver support to cities comprises the Behavioral Insights Team, the Center for Government Excellence at Johns Hopkins University, the Government Performance Lab at the Harvard Kennedy School, Results for America and the Sunlight Foundation.

For more information on Bloomberg Philanthropies, visit   To learn more about What Works Cities, visit