Cincinnati Takes Big Step Forward to Improve Its Municipal Performance

Cincinnati, Ohio

Cincinnati, Ohio Doug Lemke /


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Mayor Cranley: The Office of Performance and Data Analytics “is absolutely essential for us to meet expectations for good customer service.”

Earlier this year, Government Executive’s Route Fifty featured a handful of city governments that have embraced municipal data analytics and performance as a way to improve public services, including Louisville, Cincinnati and Somerville, Massachusetts.

In an interview this winter, Cincinnati City Manager Harry Black told Editor-at-Large Timothy B. Clark that he hopes Ohio’s third-largest city will “leapfrog to the front of the class” of municipal stat programs around the country.

On Wednesday, city leaders in Cincinnati took a big step with their stats efforts with the opening of the Office of Performance and Data Analytics, in an event featuring Black, Mayor John Cranley, City Councilmember Kevin Flynn and Chief Performance Officer Chad Kenney Jr.

“This impressive new space will serve as a source of pride for our City government and as a symbol for what will be achieved in our City’s next chapter,” Black said in statement. “The work that will take place here will make our City government better, faster and smarter.”

The mayor said in a statement: “This initiative will make City government more efficient and help us learn exactly where we need to improve. In an era of declining resources, this project is absolutely essential for us to meet expectations for good customer service.”

There are three major initiatives associated with the new office: The first involves performance management agreements with municipal department heads; the second is the city government’s Innovation Lab, meant to “address the most stubborn service and operational issues”; the third is the CincyStat program, which utilizes performance data to target areas within public services that need to be improved or made more efficient.

Along with the new office, the city of Cincinnati will continue to develop Open Data Cincinnati, its Web portal where municipal datasets are available for public use, including food safety inspection information, 3-1-1 requests and crime incident data.

“The example we have set in terms of pulling this all together so methodically is a sign of what is to come,” Kenney said in a statement.

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Michael Grass is Executive Editor of Government Executive’s Route Fifty.

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