Enhancing Innovation Capacity in City Government

image of Enhancing Innovation Capacity in City Government

Cities are reinventing themselves to adapt and respond to their evolving contexts. One instrument that local government is leveraging is innovation. To understand how cities approach public sector innovation, the OECD and Bloomberg Philanthropies carried out a survey on innovation capacity across 89 cities in OECD countries and non-OECD economies. The focus of the survey was to unpack the capacity to innovate in the local public sector and explore the resources – human, financial, and institutional – and how they can work to boost innovation in a city.

This report explores the approaches and goals, staffing and structure, data, financial resources, and evaluation efforts that local administrations are making to innovate. It also reviews the outcomes that are resulting from these measures, especially related to resident well-being.



Understanding innovation in cities

Innovation is high on the agenda of national and local governments. This chapter will first conduct a revision of literature to discuss why governments innovate and why this is relevant for cities. In addition, the chapter will move to define public sector innovation and innovation capacity as the two central concepts in this report. Finally, the chapter will propose an analytical framework for innovation capacity in cities and offer a clustering of cities that provide an empirical approach of how cities innovate.


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