DC Mayor Muriel Bowser‘s Office said on Tuesday the city is teaming up with Bloomberg Philanthropies to launch an innovation team (i-team).
The District, along with five other cities from around the world, will get a three-year grant to launch the team that will focus on data and digital technologies to “empower residents, businesses, and visitors to seamlessly navigate government resources and opportunities by providing a user-friendly platform for giving feedback and engaging with DC Government.”
Six new team members will be hired to work with the Mayor’s Office of Policy to create an expanded Mayor’s Office of Policy and Innovation.
During the three-year period, Bloomberg Philanthropies will provide technical assistance to the innovation team.
“We are proud, with the support of Bloomberg Philanthropies, to launch an innovation team in the capital of inclusive innovation,” Mayor Bowser in a release.
“DC Government is excelling in many ways – we’re accountable, we’re responsive, and we juggle the responsibilities of a city, county, and state. Throughout the pandemic, the team at DC Government – 37,000 members strong – rose to incredible challenges to not only protect our community but continue providing world-class city services. Now, as we make our comeback, the i-team will help us recover stronger and deliver that better normal we know is possible,” she added.
The Bowser Administration started its strategic planning efforts to build a vision in the digital age prior to the pandemic, according to the release.
“Under Mayor Bowser, Washington, DC has been a data and innovation leader,” said Michael Bloomberg, founder Bloomberg Philanthropies and former New York City mayor. “This investment will help the city continue to improve public services, meet resident needs, and emerge from the pandemic stronger and more equitable than ever.”
Bloomberg Philanthropies has been funding innovation teams since 2011. Other cities that will be benefit from the program are Amsterdam, Netherlands; Bogotá, Colombia; Mexico City, Mexico; Reykjavík, Iceland; and San Francisco, California.