Office of the Mayor-President

For release: IMMEDIATELY

Release Date: 09/26/2017

Baton Rouge Selected to Join Bloomberg’s National What Works Cities Initiative

Ninety Cities Now Committed to Making Government
More Effective Using Data and Evidence

Baton Rouge, La. — Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome today announced that the capital city has been selected as one of five new cities to participate in Bloomberg Philanthropies’ national What Work Cities initiative — one of the largest-ever philanthropic efforts to enhance the use of data and evidence in the public sector. Baton Rouge will receive technical assistance from world-class experts to build its capacity to track progress in housing recovery efforts related to the August 2016 flooding in the state. The City will also engage community stakeholders while developing an open data policy and exploring opportunities for residents to use municipal data.

“This is an amazing opportunity for Baton Rouge,” Mayor-President Broome said. “I look forward to our team making the most of this initiative to better serve our residents.”

The city’ selection, along with that of Cary, North Carolina; Fayetteville, North Carolina; Hayward, California; and Winston-Salem, North Carolina was announced nationally today by What Works Cities.

“Data is one of the best resources at cities’ disposal for effectively solving challenges and driving progress,” said Simone Brody, executive director of What Works Cities. “We’re supporting city leaders to maximize the use of their data to make more informed decisions, develop stronger programs and services, and better serve their communities.”

With today’s new participating cities, What Works Cities is now partnering with 90 cities across the country that are home to more than 28 million people in 37 states and have annual budgets exceeding $96 billion. The initiative will partner with 100 cities on a rolling basis through 2018.

With support from a consortium of expert partners, What Works Cities are identifying more effective ways to evaluate programs and improve performance; best use resources to serve their 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 actively sharing best practices for outcomes-focused government. Baton Rouge will will improve open data practices in order to make municipal data more accessible and engage residents around government priorities and services.

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. Other cities that are partnering with What Works Cities include Albuquerque, New Mexico; Anchorage, Alaska; Baltimore, Maryland; Charlotte, North Carolina; Jackson, Mississippi; Miami, Florida; and Washington, D.C.

For more information about Bloomberg Philanthropies, go to For more information about What Works Cities, go to