Gilbert honored for use of data in town’s decision-making

Gilbert water tower
The town of Gilbert received gold certification from What Works Cities for its use of data in decision-making. (Courtesy town of Gilbert)

The town of Gilbert received gold certification from What Works Cities for its use of data in decision-making. (Courtesy town of Gilbert)

The town of Gilbert received gold-level certification from What Works Cities, a national initiative launched by Bloomberg Philanthropies, for the town’s use of data and evidence in its decision-making.

The town is one of 40 cities to receive such certification since the program launched in 2017 and one of 16 to be newly certified this year.

Town Manager Patrick Banger said the town has worked to create a culture that uses data to drive decision-making throughout the organization to make life better for its citizens.

After the challenging year that we all have experienced, this recognition is even more meaningful, and I look forward to building on this achievement moving forward,” Banger said in a release.

Some of the initiatives in which the town has used data include having an open data portal, known as Alex, for residents to use on the town’s website; keeping residents informed on the town’s progress through COVID-19 and using data to develop and maintain programs; and for the #GilbertTogether business recovery program.

“The town of Gilbert’s efforts to utilize data serves as a model for any local government looking to make a commitment to data excellence, improve government services and engage residents,” said Jenn Park, founding director of What Works Cities Certification.

In addition to Gilbert, Glendale achieved silver certification while Phoenix and Tempe upgraded their certifications to gold.

To evaluate cities, experts from What Works Cities conducted a validation process of cities' certification assessment and participated in site visits to the highest-performing cities.
By Tom Blodgett

Editor, Gilbert

Raised in Arizona, Tom Blodgett has spent more than 30 years in journalism in Arizona and joined Community Impact Newspaper in July 2018 to launch the Gilbert edition. He is a graduate of Arizona State University, where he served as an instructional professional in the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication from 2005-19 and remains editorial adviser to The State Press, the university's independent student media outlet.


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