During a time of crippling political turmoil, local leaders are stepping up to fulfill their role as pragmatic problem-solvers and combating the tough challenges – such as economic growth, environmental protection, public safety and poverty – facing our cities today. This empowering phenomenon is highlighted by Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Mayors Challenge, a competition designed to further inspire America’s mayors and local leaders to generate innovative ideas that solve major challenges and improve city life.
Over 300 cities across the nation took the challenge and 20 finalists were selected in November. Now, it is your turn to vote on the idea you believe to have the greatest potential for impact. Five bold ideas will be selected in the coming weeks, each receiving national and local recognition. In addition, the winning city will receive a $5,000,000 grand prize and four other cities will receive $1,000,000 to help implement their ideas.
The proposals after the break…
Boston, MA: Darwin places youth data in the hands of parents. Darwin empowers parents to invest that resource with educators, technologists, and researchers to ensure the best programs for their children.
Chicago, IL: Chicago will build the first open-source predictive analytics platform that will help leaders make smarter, faster decisions in real-time to help address and prevent problems before they develop.
Cincinnati, OH: Annually, 28,000 babies in the U.S. die before their first birthday. Through innovations in care coordination, data collection and analysis, Cincinnati discovered a replicable way to dramatically reduce prematurity and infant death.
Durham, NC: Three Proof of Concept Community Labs will transform vacant, blighted properties into the stages where resident stories meet relevance-based governance and global-reaching solutions.
High Point, NC: For the first time anywhere, High Point, NC is adapting the focused deterrence model to control domestic violence offenders to protect our mothers, daughters, sisters, and children.
Hillsboro, OR: GoPoint will help create a balanced suburban transportation system by branding, promoting, and managing a network of mobility hubs that use technology to integrate public and private transportation options.
Houston, TX: One Bin for All is a revolutionary idea for residents to discard all materials in one bin, treating “trash” as valuable assets and dramatically increasing recycling using game changing technologies.
Indianapolis, IN: Neighborhoods of Educational Opportunity brings together an unprecedented community coalition to strengthen neighborhoods and revitalize Indianapolis by launching a holistic, standardized process to double the number of high-quality student seats.
Knoxville, TN: Knoxville will create a culture of healthy eating and eliminate food deserts by stimulating connections in the urban food cycle between land, farming jobs, food processing, distribution, sale, and composting.
Lafayette, LA: Level Up, Lafayette! bridges the “engagement gap” by encouraging residents to play community enrichment games in which winning outcomes translate into tangible improvements for residents of Lafayette.
Lexington, KY: CitizenLex helps cities turn citizen energy into action through a set of tools that catalyze innovative community projects.
Milwaukee, WI: In targeted HOME GR/OWN Zones, engaged, empowered, and enabled residents repurpose foreclosed houses and vacant lots into abundant healthy food assets, yielding healthier, safer, revitalized neighborhoods, and greater economic opportunities.
Philadelphia, PA: Philadelphia will put R&D into RFP, reforming our procurement processes to provide a path for creative entrepreneurs with innovative solutions to work with city government, tackling the toughest urban challenges.
Phoenix, AZ: Phoenix will create a Smart Energy Neighborhood Model that helps residents and businesses reduce energy use, save money, and enjoy a high quality, energy-savvy lifestyle.
Providence, RI: By their fourth birthday, children who grow up in low-income households will have heard thirty-million fewer words than their middle- and high-income peers. Providence Talks solves this problem, for good.
Saint Paul, MN: Permit Saint Paul will spur investment in our city by enabling developers, entrepreneurs, and residents to secure their licenses and permits through a user-friendly, web-based consumer portal.
San Francisco, CA: Skillville matches job seekers with professional development opportunities through microvolunteering on city projects. The result: government capacity increases and job seekers develop skills that equip them for employment.
Santa Monica, CA: Santa Monica will become the first city in the nation to measure and actively improve what really matters to every person in our community: wellbeing.
Springfield, OR: Springfield will enable universal access to primary care for all at a lower overall cost.
Syracuse, NY: Syracuse will establish an identity as an international city by designing the blueprint by which to harness the talents and energies of New Americans, showcase diversity, and transform distressed neighborhoods.