ADVERTISEMENT

Authors

Tod Newcombe  |  Managing Editor

Email : tnewcombe@governing.com Twitter : @tnewcombe

Tod is the managing editor of Governing and the contributing editor of our sister publication, Government Technology. He was previously the editor of Public CIO, e.Republic’s award-winning publication for IT executives in the public sector, and is the author of several books on information management. 

THE FUTURE OF Finance

Money Matters: Voters to Decide Major Tax Initiatives

Arizona, California and Illinois are just some of the states that have significant tax measures on the ballot that could impact billions in state revenue for years to come.

October 28, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Security

Security Trouble Grows in Academia as School Begins

Schools and colleges are relying on technology more than ever to deliver learning during the pandemic. Criminals are ready to exploit vulnerabilities with ransomware and other tactics. Help is needed, say experts.

September 8, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Security

Will Virginia Lead the U.S. to Adopt Smart Tracing Apps?

Silicon Valley was going to help America keep track of COVID-19 with badly needed technology. Yet, states never embraced the idea, and tech firms couldn’t overcome privacy concerns. But the idea is getting a reboot.

August 11, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Security

Cybercriminals Gain a Hacking Edge on Government and Higher Ed

The week in cybersecurity includes news about a surge in COVID-related hacking attacks on government and colleges and how facial recognition technology is losing ground as demands rise for police reform.

July 28, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Security

Cybersecurity and COVID Challenge Election Preparations

The week in cybersecurity includes news about proposed changes to California’s privacy law, federal aid to protect schools from cyberattacks and calls for the police to stop partnering with Amazon’s Ring surveillance service.

June 30, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Security

Web Defacement, Tracing Disinformation, CIO Talks Security

The world of government cybersecurity remains volatile as cybercriminals practice digital graffiti and public officials struggle to overcome disinformation about the purpose of contact tracing.

June 2, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Security

States and Cities Tackle a Multitude of Cybersecurity Concerns

The pandemic has generated another round of work by states to craft some kind of tracking app that doesn’t violate privacy rules. Meanwhile, policymakers have turned their attention to cybercrimes and surveillance.

May 19, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Security

Contact Tracing Raises Opportunities and Concerns

This week’s security newsletter follows the growing importance of contact tracing as it expands both manually and digitally. The tech field loves the app, but does the public?

May 5, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Security

State CISOs Adjust to COVID; Is Surveillance the New Normal?

This week’s newsletter looks at how the crisis has brought new challenges to cybersecurity leaders and what they are doing about it. And, will contact tracing — a key to helping us return to normal — jeopardize our privacy?

April 21, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Security

Pandemic Raises Cyberattack Fears; Election Security Trouble?

This week’s security newsletter covers the growing concerns about hacker opportunities while states and localities struggle to manage operations during the COVID-19 outbreak. Meanwhile, what to do about election security?

April 7, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF What’s Happening Now

Governments Ramp Up Communications as COVID-19 Accelerates

Communicating during a crisis calls for government to deliver a balance of credible, correct and timely information. It’s not easy, but tested strategies and tools are available.

April 1, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Security

HHS Cyberattacked and Coronavirus Raises Vulnerability Fears

The attack on the federal agency comes as government officials scramble to respond to the rapidly spreading virus as fears grow that the U.S. is vulnerable to cyber adversaries. Mobile voting security takes a hit.

March 24, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Security

Coronavirus Concerns Hit RSA and a New Voting System Has a Glitchy Start

Despite some no-shows at the RSA conference, the event showcased important information on cybersecurity. Meanwhile, in Los Angeles County, a $280 million voting system ran into technical issues during its debut.

March 10, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF What’s Next

Legislators Face Tech-Heavy Agenda as They Confront the Future: Digital Issues to Watch

Never before have policymakers faced such daunting questions on regulating and legislating the growing impact of digital technology. We pick the most important issues they will grapple with this year.

February 27, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Security

The Future of Security: Ransomware Hits Pipeline Operator

Plus, Kentucky officials report regular scans of their election systems by foreign adversaries; surveillance becomes normalized thanks to the growing popularity of doorbell cameras; and more.

February 25, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Security

DHS Faces 2020 Election Security Planning Challenges

While state election officials said they were generally satisfied with the support they were receiving from the Department of Homeland Security to secure election infrastructure, problems remain with planning efforts.

February 11, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Finance

Massachusetts Bets Big by Raising Ride-Sharing Surcharges

As the number of rides from transportation network companies has surged in recent years, governments feel compelled to charge higher fees to help pay for road congestion problems and to improve public transit.

February 4, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Security

Phone Cracking Software Popular Among Local Police Agencies

This week, Governing’s Future of Security looks at police use of smartphone decryption tools, ransomware legislation and election hacking fears.

January 27, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Security

Election Security, School Surveillance and Ransomware

This week, Governing’s Future of Security takes a look at the latest developments in election security, ransomware and the growing use of surveillance tools, such as facial recognition, inside of public schools.

January 14, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF What’s Next

The Biggest Issues to Watch in 2020

State legislatures will have a lot on their plates. They’ll deal with issues in wildly differing ways. We set the context for the 2020 session with an overview of abortion, election security, housing, immigration, net neutrality, pensions, pre-emption, recession fears, redistricting, vaping, and workforce.

January 13, 2020
Read More

THE FUTURE OF Finance

Government’s Mixed Success with Financial Modernization

The financial system for any major organization is complex and that includes state and local government. Efforts to expand the capabilities of finance through new technology can lead to different results as these two examples show.

January 7, 2020
Read More

Tech Talk

Geeks Come to the Government's Rescue

The organization some refer to as "the Peace Corps for geeks" has launched a major effort to improve the way people apply for benefits.

February 5, 2018
Read More

Tech Talk

15 Years Later, REAL ID Act's Vision Will Finally Become Reality

After years of fighting the post-9/11 law that added security standards for ID cards, states seem to be on board. It's going to cost them, though.

January 1, 2018
Read More

Tech Talk

As Artificial Intelligence Grows in Government, Experts Urge Caution

The technology certainly has benefits, but some say they could be outweighed by its drawbacks.

December 15, 2017
Read More

Tech Talk

4 Ways to Modernize Data

Take these steps and usher in a new era of better services.

November 29, 2017
Read More

Tech Talk

Government Technology's Complicated History

The public sector has been notoriously slow to embrace technology. Is that finally changing?

October 23, 2017
Read More

Tech Talk

As a 9/11-Inspired Emergency Network Nears, Some States May Go Rogue

The government is building a nationwide network that helps first responders communicate better during emergencies. To succeed, most states must opt in.

September 11, 2017
Read More

Tech Talk

Drowning in Data, Cities Turn to 'Citizen Scientists'

Governments have more data than they have the manpower to handle. Some recruit volunteers to help analyze it all, but they're far from being experts in data.

August 22, 2017
Read More

Tech Talk

IT Department? In Small-Town Governments, They Rarely Exist.

Many cities and towns are struggling to keep up with the latest technological advances. But in a few places, their bigger peers are willing to help.

July 26, 2017
Read More

Tech Talk

Decentralizing Government's IT

Florida wants to cut its technology costs. But is the state going about it all wrong?

June 6, 2017
Read More

Tech Talk

Are State Ethics Rules Keeping Up With Social Media?

One state legislator's legal battle showcases how outdated laws can hamper citizen engagement -- and get officials in trouble.

May 15, 2017
Read More

Tech Talk

The Cyberthreat to Government That's Lurking in the Shadows

Many public employees use unsanctioned software on work computers. It poses serious security risks.

April 1, 2017
Read More

Tech Talk

Letting the Little Guy In: How Ohio Expanded Its IT Expertise

The state revamped its procurement system so that it's not missing out on smaller, innovative firms anymore. The new process is already catching fire in other states.

March 29, 2017
Read More

Tech Talk

One Way to Save Money, Reduce Fraud and Employ People Faster

New Mexico has a unique program that combines behavioral economics and predictive analytics.

February 27, 2017
Read More

Tech Talk

Can School Buses Close the Digital Gap?

Districts are experimenting with ways to get every student access to high-speed Internet. Right now, millions don't.

January 1, 2017
Read More

Tech Talk

Are New York's Unprecedented Cyber-Regulations Necessary?

The state is on track to enacting first-in-the-nation rules about how banks respond to cyberattacks. Some say they're misguided.

December 5, 2016
Read More

Tech Talk

Cities Closely Watching Chicago’s Version of a Fitbit

The city is installing sensors that could reveal a lot about the best way for governments to use smart technology.

November 23, 2016
Read More

Tech Talk

Artificial Intelligence: The Next Big Thing in Government

The White House just released a report on the future of artificial intelligence. Some governments are already using A.I., but it could have a far wider impact.

October 13, 2016
Read More

Tech Talk

3 Ways Governments Are Fighting Hackers

Agencies are broadening a few conventional tactics to prevent cyberattacks.

September 1, 2016
Read More

Tech Talk

Words of IT Wisdom From Silicon Valley to Governments

Palo Alto’s city manager wants governments to rip up the IT rule book to make better investments.

August 11, 2016
Read More

Tech Talk

High-Speed Police Chases Go High-Tech

Technology is transforming the way police fight crime, making it safer for not only officers but also criminals and innocent bystanders.

July 28, 2016
Read More

Tech Talk

Dot-Govs Get a Much-Needed Facelift

Several big cities are decluttering and redesigning their government websites to make them easier to use.

June 20, 2016
Read More

Tech Talk

4 Reasons Data Analytics Often Fail

It’s one of the hottest trends in the public sector, but it’s not easy to succeed with data.

May 23, 2016
Read More

Tech Talk

CIOs Fear Mass Exodus of Government IT Workers

States are not only anticipating a wave of retirements but also trouble filling the vacancies. How are they preparing?

April 29, 2016
Read More

Tech Talk

Hackers Hold Police Files Hostage for Ransom

The growing threat of cybercrime has exposed just how vulnerable police departments are to it.

March 9, 2016
Read More

Tech Talk

Know CPR? New App Sends Alerts When Someone Nearby Needs It

It shows how technology can come to people’s aid -- sometimes faster than government.

March 28, 2016
Read More

Tech Talk

The Private Tech Sector Goes Public

More companies than ever now offer digital services and tools designed specifically for government. Here are a few.

February 10, 2016
Read More

Tech Talk

As Water Utilities Move Online, Hackers Take Note

America's power grid has gotten a lot of attention, but water utilities are increasingly vulnerable to cyberattacks.

February 5, 2016
Read More

Tech Talk

Broadband Adoption Reaches a Standstill in Tech-Savvy Seattle

Even one of America's most connected cities is struggling to get everyone online.

January 13, 2016
Read More

Tech Talk

Can Technology Help Prevent Drug Overdoses?

Massachusetts has begun using data analytics to predict where they might occur.

January 1, 2016
Read More

Tech Talk

Can Cars That Park Themselves Reduce Traffic?

New England’s most densely populated city is testing a new way to alleviate congestion and free up more space for public transit, pedestrians and bicyclists.

December 9, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

Making Government Transparency More Transparent

In their quest to make public records requests easier, faster and cheaper, some governments are publishing them online for anyone to see.

December 1, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

The Sometimes Sad State of Voter Registration in America

Automatic and online voter registration have proven to increase voter rolls and save money, yet many states are still using paper.

November 11, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

States Are Slacking on Cybersecurity

A recent audit finds California’s efforts are woefully inadequate. And that’s the good news.

November 7, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

Instead of Fighting, Some Cities Team Up With Airbnb and Uber

While many places try to regulate or ban sharing-economy companies, a few are taking advantage of them to improve their emergency preparedness and transportation options.

October 14, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

States Seek Upgrades for Decades-Old Medical Technology

Most have avoided upgrading the systems that run our biggest health-care program themselves. But some are looking to outsource.

October 29, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

Can Yelp Help Government Win Back the Public's Trust?

The popular review site is giving public employees a place to directly engage with citizens. Whether that improves services or trust remains to be seen.

September 9, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

The City That Incorporated Social Media Into Everything

In Roanoke, Va., Facebook, Twitter and all their social-network cousins have a home in every government agency.

September 1, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

States Start Restricting Police License Plate Readers

Critics say the now-popular technology needs to be regulated, but cops worry too much regulation will hurt their ability to fight crime.

August 12, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

The (Hidden) Cost of Open Data

For all of its advantages, cost isn't always one of them. But there are ways to keep them down.

August 12, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

Government Apps Are Popular, But Are They Useful?

What may seem like a great way to engage citizens may not be as effective as cities would like.

July 1, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

311 Upgrades Make It Cheaper to Connect With Citizens

Some cash-strapped cities shut down their 311 services during the recession. But they can actually save cities money.

June 10, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

Advice for State CIOs: Make IT Interesting

New CIOs need to learn the importance of marketing technology to leadership.

June 1, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

A Cautionary Tale for Any Government IT Project

How did Los Angeles spend more than $1 billion to buy an iPad for every student and instead end up losing its leader and being investigated by the FBI and SEC?

May 13, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

The Payoffs of Financial Transparency

Most cities are failing to tell their fiscal stories well or at all. New York and Chicago, though, offer models of true transparency.

April 16, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

Have Non-Lethal Weapons Reduced Deadly Police Force?

Many departments have been using them for decades, and the technology for some recently improved.

April 15, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

New Apps May Make Giving and Getting Government Aid Easier

Mobile technology has made a belated but much needed debut in human services.

April 1, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

States Turn to Technology to Calculate Prison Sentences

Human error and outdated technology have miscalculated thousands of prison sentences and cost some states millions of dollars.

March 11, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

States Use Big Data to Nab Tax Fraudsters

Technology has made it easier for people to commit tax fraud and for governments to catch it.

March 1, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

A Security Dilemma for Smart Devices

Wireless-connected devices offer financial benefits for local governments, but they come at a price.

February 11, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

Tardy Transit? Tweet About It

Transit agencies are finally catching up to the private sector’s use of social media to improve their systems and increase the public’s trust in them.

February 1, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

Governments Making It Easier for Citizens to Know the Law

Once tightly controlled by commercial publishers, legal codes are becoming more accessible online, thanks to the open data movement.

January 14, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

The Growing Data Gap

As data-driven services and programs have grown, so has the data disparity between the rich and the poor.

January 1, 2015
Read More

Tech Talk

4 Tech Trends Changing How Cities Operate

A recent survey reveals how local governments are using technology (both new and old) to engage citizens and improve performance.

December 8, 2014
Read More

Tech Talk

Open Data’s Hidden Value

States and localities can profit from it, and it’s time to start talking about how.

December 1, 2014
Read More

Tech Talk

5 Tech Issues Every Governor Needs to Know

A recent survey of state CIOs shows how governments can modernize and run efficiently.

November 10, 2014
Read More

Tech Talk

Drones Take Off, But Regulations Remain Grounded

Everyone from Hollywood to state and local governments want in on the action.

November 1, 2014
Read More

Public Safety & Justice

First Responders Left in the Dark on Public Safety Network

The people who would actually use the first nationwide public safety wireless communications network have largely been left out of its creation, possibly hurting its effectiveness.

October 13, 2014
Read More

Tech Talk

States Approach Federal Data Breach Law with Caution

With 47 different state laws on what companies are supposed to do when they become victims of cyberattack, is it time for federal legislation?

October 1, 2014
Read More

Public Safety & Justice

Can Body Cameras Really Reduce Police Use of Force?

Ferguson police are the latest of more than 1,000 departments to wear body cameras, which are proven to reduce officers' use of force and citizens' complaints against cops.

September 4, 2014
Read More

Tech Talk

Coming Soon to a Government Near You: Cloud Computing

Can a model procurement agreement speed the adoption of cloud computing?

September 1, 2014
Read More

Management & Labor

Utah Leading the Mobile-Friendly Government Movement

Most state and local governments in the U.S. are stuck in a desktop world with websites and services that don't work on smartphones and tablets. But not Utah.

August 11, 2014
Read More

Tech Talk

Texting 911: The Tech Is There but Cities Aren't Ready

Only 100 emergency call centers out of more than 6,000 across the country are capable of receiving and responding to text messages.

August 1, 2014
Read More

Management & Labor

Why Are Governments Stuck in the Stone Age?

Cloud computing is a cheaper, more reliable way to manage electronic records than hard drives or paper -- yet a recent IRS scandal shows how governments at every level are slow to change their ways.

July 14, 2014
Read More

Tech Talk

A Quick Way to Build a Wireless Network

Local governments are using mesh networks to stay connected during outages, offer high-speed Wi-Fi and breach the digital divide. But it’s not perfect.

July 1, 2014
Read More

Urban

Can Phone Apps Rebuild Trust in Government?

Some cities think the key to getting citizens to trust in and see the value of government again is developing civic technology that's proven to work.

June 9, 2014
Read More

Latest News

Beyond Congestion Pricing: Reducing Traffic Problems by Changing People’s Commuting Habits

A company called Urban Engines works with city transit authorities to figure out better ways to use existing infrastructure and to craft incentives to change people’s transportation behaviors and reduce congestion.

June 4, 2014
Read More

Tech Talk

NYC’s Simple Plan for Reducing IT Fraud and Waste

After losing hundreds of millions of dollars, the city is starting to clamp down on IT contractors to make sure taxpayer dollars are being spent wisely.

June 1, 2014
Read More

Infrastructure & Environment

The Cable Merger's Biggest Loser: Municipal Broadband

If the feds allow two of the biggest cable companies to combine, municipalities would lose even more power to create high-quality, low-cost publicly owned broadband services for their citizens.

May 12, 2014
Read More

Urban

Santander: The Smartest Smart City

The Spanish city is embedded with more than 12,000 sensors to help the government operate as efficiently as possible. It’s changing the way Europe thinks about cities.

May 1, 2014
Read More

Tech Talk

The United Arab Emirates: A Rising Star in E-Government

How the small Middle Eastern country jumped from 49th to 28th in online service delivery should have state and local CIOs in the United States paying close attention.

May 1, 2014
Read More

Education

A New Way for Schools to Pay for Technology

The federal program that funds technology in schools spends about $600 million on outdated tools like pagers. The FCC wants to reform it, but how that happens is subject to political debate.

April 7, 2014
Read More

Urban Notebook

Small Cities Struggle to Battle the Rise in Heroin Abuse

There’s a whole new generation of heroin addicts in rural areas and smaller, struggling cities, which have few resources to fight the epidemic and its affects.

April 1, 2014
Read More

Latest News

Why Is Government Still Using Windows XP?

Many state and local governments are still using the soon-to-be obsolete operating system, and the upgrade transition is proving very slow and costly.

March 17, 2014
Read More

Public Safety & Justice

Delaware Seeks to Stem the Shortage of Cybersecurity Workers

Facing a national shortage of experts able to battle the growing number of cyberthreats, Delaware's new initiative to boost its cybersecurity workforce could be a model for other states.

March 10, 2014
Read More

Urban Notebook

Seniors Create Their Own Communities in Cities

More and more seniors are creating naturally occurring retirement communities, forcing cities to rethink zoning laws and how they provide services.

March 7, 2014
Read More

Infrastructure & Environment

Google Glass Now for Public Transit

Utah tests the state's appetite for wearable technology as part of an overall strategy to try to better serve mobile users.

March 3, 2014
Read More

Latest News

Is That Streetlamp Watching You?

New technology makes it possible to turn ordinary streetlamps into data-gathering networks. But is it too much of a good thing?

February 27, 2014
Read More

Urban Notebook

Gentrification's Not So Black and White After All

Despite complaints about well-educated white people buying up houses in low-income minority neighborhoods, recent studies show that gentrification often helps the original residents.

March 1, 2014
Read More

Urban

Is the Cost of 311 Systems Worth the Price of Knowing?

311 systems have revolutionized the way cities gather information, allowing them to tackle small problems before they get too big. But running them can be extremely costly.

March 1, 2014
Read More

Management & Labor

Why Do Some Governments Struggle to Make Online Services Viable?

Recent audits reveal how poor strategic planning leads to lost opportunities for governments that are looking for new ways to deliver services at the lowest cost possible.

February 10, 2014
Read More

Urban Notebook

Can Mayors Really Be Robin Hood?

Several mayors have promised to tackle income inequality, but some cast doubt that cities can make a difference.

February 5, 2014
Read More

Urban Notebook

Should Cities Run Subways Later to Attract Young Professionals?

Late-night transit options may make a city more attractive to younger generations, but running trains around the clock has its drawbacks.

February 1, 2014
Read More

Urban Notebook

PHOTOS: Can Streetcars Revive the Glory Days of Urban Transit?

Once America's most popular form of urban transit, streetcars practically disappeared but have returned to cities with a vengeance.

January 17, 2014
Read More

Management & Labor

Can Government Avoid Technology Failure?

HealthCare.gov is another reminder of the ongoing problems government has with technology. But success and innovation are possible, says an expert.

January 13, 2014
Read More

Urban Notebook

Breaking Down the Barriers to Affordable Housing

With homeownership at its lowest level in decades, the demand for rental housing is high -- and so are the rents.

January 1, 2014
Read More

Latest News

As Landline Phones Disappear, Some Voice Concerns

Not only are landlines more reliable during disasters, rural residents and the elderly are concerned about the new generation of phone services that will likely be less regulated.

December 3, 2013
Read More

Politics & Elections

Boston Mayor Blogs His Way Out of Office

Outgoing Mayor Tom Menino, who was in office for 20 years, has launched what may be the first-ever transition blog to help his successor succeed.

December 1, 2013
Read More

Latest News

From School to Home to Work, Governments Struggle with Financial Policies for Tech Devices

Many school districts pay for students to bring iPads home and many government agencies allow employees to use their personal devices for work. But issues like who pays for devices when they break, get lost or stolen are unclear.

November 5, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

El Paso Teaches New Urbanism to Architects, Engineers

Hoping to reinvent the sprawling city, El Paso officials decided to teach the development community the importance of new urbanism. Now, other cities are following in its footsteps.

October 2, 2013
Read More

FedWatch

Can (and Should) States Regulate the Internet?

Doing what Congress failed to do, California became the first state to require websites to let minors delete what they post on social media. But the new law has already ignited a heated debate.

October 1, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

The Rise of Cities and the Mayors Who Run Them

With the feds and states more marginalized than ever, cities -- and the mayors who run them -- are growing stronger.

September 12, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

Broadband: Public Officials Want More Government Participation

A Governing survey shows strong support for government-run fiber networks, but it’s less clear how they will get built.

August 29, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

New Orleans' Dwindling Ferry Service

Funding cutbacks have reduced both the number of ferries that cross the Mississippi River and the schedules of those that remain, leaving commuters with few options.

August 15, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

Are Police and Fire Department Mergers Catching On?

As the cost of public safety continues to rise, some cities are thinking the once unthinkable: merging police and fire agencies into one.

August 8, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

Crime, Not Debt, is Detroit’s Biggest Problem

Two powerful women in Detroit are pushing hard for the city to focus its resources on fighting its high violent crime rate, which, in 2012, was five times the national average.

August 1, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

City Taxi Systems Struggle with Change

Calls for reforming city taxi services are getting louder just as new technologies are making it easier to get a ride.

July 31, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

Do Parking Minimums Hurt Housing Affordability?

Some cities think they do, and are moving to change parking mandates to encourage more affordable apartments.

July 18, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

Is Big Data Just for Big Cities?

Small and midsize cities are behind in harnessing data to make a city run smarter. Dubuque, Iowa, is bucking that trend.

June 28, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

Post-Bloomberg: Will Innovation in NYC Dry Up?

A new report gives the next mayor of New York City a set of innovative reforms that have proven effective and scalable in other cities.

June 19, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

Do Cities Need a Chief Resilience Officer?

The Rockefeller Foundation is awarding $100 million to cities willing to create chief resilience officers to prepare for and recover from disasters, which have increased in frequency and intensity due to climate change.

June 12, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

Bike Lane Battles Heat Up

Cities like San Francisco and Chicago are running into resistance from drivers as they try to meet demand for more bike lanes.

May 15, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

Cities Ramp Up Data Projects

Better ways of using data can speed up solutions to urban issues. But a number of traditional problems stand in the way.

May 9, 2013
Read More

View

How the FCC Could Shape a Mobile Data-Driven Economy

The direction the agency takes under its next chairman will have major implications for governments, for growth and for innovation.

May 2, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

Preservation Tax Credit and Local History in Danger

The historic tax credit, which has helped preserve thousands of old buildings in cities across the country, is at risk of being eliminated.

April 30, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

Complete Streets Policies Surge in Popularity

A new report says 488 states, counties and cities now have a plan that calls for streets that are "safe for all users of all ages and abilities."

April 30, 2013
Read More

View

The Benefits of Drones, Police on Pinterest, and a Successful IT Consolidation

News you should know about government and technology.

April 2, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

Tom Menino, Boston's 'Urban Mechanic' Mayor, Will Not Run for Re-Election

After five terms, the city's longest-serving mayor will leave office at the end of the year.

April 1, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

What Makes Grand Rapids So Grand?

The Michigan city is rebounding, and its secret to success includes partnerships and a regional agenda.

March 28, 2013
Read More

Columns

Is It Time to Revive Boarding Houses?

Over time, single room occupancy hotels became the housing of last resort for the poorest and most troubled segment of an urban population and have all but disappeared.

February 14, 2013
Read More

Columns

Transparency, Social Media and Gun Safety

4 ways technology can help make guns safer, 5 up-and-coming social media sites and more.

February 5, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

The Mayor Had Chutzpah

Ed Koch, the lively, contentious mayor of New York City who died at the age of 88 on Feb. 1, left an indelible mark on the city where he lived and worked for most of his life.

February 4, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

U.S. Cities Consider Capping Parking Spots

Cars are being kept out of popular pedestrian areas worldwide and the movement is coming stateside.

January 31, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

When Will the U.S. Build Another Subway?

High construction costs have made it virtually impossible to build new subways. But we still need them.

January 28, 2013
Read More

Columns

Chattanooga’s Internet Rise

Chattanooga, Tenn., has leapt to the forefront of cities with ultra high-speed broadband and has accomplished the feat in a surprisingly old-fashioned way.

January 22, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

New Funding Model Needed for Urban Parks

People love parks, but building a new urban park is expensive. It’s why so many cities rely heavily on public-private partnerships to build today’s urban parks.

January 15, 2013
Read More

Urban Notebook

San Jose Council Member Explains How City Fixed Its Pension System

San Jose has had its share of political troubles, from bribery to corruption, but nothing compared to the ticking pension time bomb.

December 10, 2012
Read More

Urban Notebook

Spotlight on Walkable Neighborhoods Gets Brighter

New policies and reports buttress economic and social importance of high-density cities.

December 3, 2012
Read More

Urban Notebook

The Great Convention Center Bailout

With convention attendance down 40 million people from a decade earlier, why are cities pouring money into building and expanding facilities?

November 30, 2012
Read More

Urban Notebook

Tired of Service Cuts, California Cities Raise Taxes

Have cities reached the limit when it comes to cutting services? That seems to be the case in California where voters passed 71 percent of local tax and bond measures.

November 21, 2012
Read More

Urban Notebook

11 Cities in Massachusetts Band Together to Solve Urban Ills

Can a collaborative network help 2nd tier cities?

November 12, 2012
Read More

Urban Notebook

Casino Developers Court Cities

The latest market for gaming isn’t in the suburbs anymore; it’s downtown, where developers are retrofitting existing buildings and changing the casino as we know it.

October 31, 2012
Read More

Urban Notebook

DIY Urbanism Makes Creative Use of Public Spaces

As the economy continues to take big bites out of arts and city planning budgets, this bottom-up approach is changing the look of some cities. Are governments ready to embrace these grassroots ideas?

September 28, 2012
Read More

Urban Notebook

Tree Population Falling in Cities

Despite their aesthetic, economic and safety benefits, trees are disappearing from city sidewalks. Why?

August 31, 2012
Read More

Governing: State and local government news and analysis

Saltville, Virginia: A Company Town Without a Company

In 1971, the Olin chemical company pulled out of Saltville, leaving the tiny town to fend for itself.

July 31, 2012
Read More

Urban Notebook

Chicago Brings Participatory Budgeting to the U.S.

Participatory budgeting, which started in Latin America, lets citizens determine spending priorities.

June 29, 2012
Read More

View

As Newspapers Shrink, Public Officials Worry

Recent cutbacks in daily print schedules will leave communities less informed.

June 20, 2012
Read More

Urban Notebook

With Americans Driving Less, What Will Happen to the Parking Lot?

Cities are finding creative uses for these environmentally unfriendly spaces.

May 31, 2012
Read More

Urban Notebook

City Hall Buildings Fall Victim to Local Budgets

The upkeep and restoration of older city halls often become casualties of budgets squeezed by the Great Recession.

April 30, 2012
Read More

Urban Notebook

Railroad Park Unites Birmingham, Alabama

The park, which is part of a trend of turning urban, industrial spaces into green space, pairs a functional railroad with an amphitheater, walking trails, grassy lawns and more.

March 30, 2012
Read More

Urban Notebook

Better Zoning through Breaking Old Codes

Form-based codes have emerged as a powerful tool for city planners who want to stop the sprawl that’s resulted from bad zoning rules.

February 29, 2012
Read More

Urban Notebook

Springfield, Mass., Wants to Become a Resurgent City

And it’s looking to tap the secret of other cities’ success in the post-manufacturing age.

January 31, 2012
Read More

Infrastructure & Environment

Restored Streetcars Now Desirable

To the delight of many, old streetcars are being restored to their former glory and put back into transit service in New Orleans, Philadelphia and Portland.

January 31, 2012
Read More

Urban Notebook

Blame Phone Apps for Graffiti’s Reemergence

Technology has spurred a renewed interest in street art. Cash-strapped cities are combating the costly problem with smartphones.

January 1, 2012
Read More

Politics & Elections

Legislative Issues to Watch in 2012

These nine topics will shape debate in state legislatures in 2012.

December 30, 2011
Read More

Governing: State and local government news and analysis

Cybercrime Hits Small Towns

As more public employees use social media, mobile devices and cloud computing, cyberattacks are becoming a bigger concern. Is small-town America prepared?

November 30, 2011
Read More

Urban Notebook

The Trouble with Pedestrian Malls

Once popular, these car-free zones are slowly disappearing from the urban landscape.

November 30, 2011
Read More

Urban Notebook

Pensions Threaten to Sink Cities

Pension problems at the state level have been grabbing headlines for some time, but many experts believe the real trouble is at the local level.

October 31, 2011
Read More

Urban Notebook

Quincy, Mass., Rebuilds from Scratch

The city is clearing land to rebuild its downtown using a unique business model that some say could be a game changer.

September 30, 2011
Read More

Urban Notebook

Houston’s Green Revolution

America’s oil capital embraces the sustainability movement.

August 31, 2011
Read More

Urban Notebook

Urban Areas Defy Crime Trends

Despite the recession, which usually spurs a rise in law-breaking, violent and property crimes have dropped for the fourth year in a row. How can this be?

July 29, 2011
Read More

Urban Notebook

Manufacturing Returns to Cities

Small urban manufacturers offer economic benefits to cities and could flourish with federal policy support.

June 30, 2011
Read More

Infrastructure & Environment

America’s One and Only Personal Rapid Transit System

Morgantown, W.Va., is the only place in the world where riders can hop into cars and travel from point to point without stopping at other stations along the way.

June 30, 2011
Read More

Urban Notebook

Drivers Battle with Bikers for Road Space

When New York City replaced a car lane with a bike lane, it exposed the tricky problem of adding another form of transportation infrastructure to a city.

May 31, 2011
Read More

Urban Notebook

Cities' Access to Fresh Food Worsens

Higher maintenance costs in urban areas have led to a serious lack of grocery stores for city dwellers. States and cities are working on ways to get them back.

April 29, 2011
Read More

Health & Human Services

Seniors and the City

Most experts agree little is being done to make cities more age-friendly, but some cities are taking steps.

March 31, 2011
Read More

Urban Notebook

Motorists and Light Rail Struggle to Share the Road

City motorists need to remember that streets aren't just for cars anymore.

February 28, 2011
Read More

Politics & Elections

Players in Wisconsin’s Union Turmoil

The battle over public sector unions in Madison has thrust state legislators into the limelight. Meet some of the players in this slideshow.

February 25, 2011
Read More

State News

South Carolina Columnist Wins Award for Public Service Journalism

Cindi Ross Scoppe, a columnist with The State, South Carolina's largest daily newspaper, is the recipient of the eighth annual Hal Hovey-Peter Harkness Award, presented by Governing for outstanding coverage of state and local government.

February 3, 2011
Read More

Infrastructure & Environment

A Tour of New York City's Croton Water Filtration Plant

This photo gallery spotlights New York City's first and only water filtration plant, which will sit below a golf course in the Bronx.

February 1, 2011
Read More

Urban Notebook

The Rust Belt Has Arrived

Interest in cities that have fallen on hard times in the Midwest and Northeast brings new cachet to living and working in the Rust Belt.

February 1, 2011
Read More

Politics & Elections

8 Issues to Watch in 2011

These topics will capture the attention of state legislators in 2011.

December 23, 2010
Read More

Urban Notebook

Philadelphia's Open-Door Immigrant Policy

Immigrant populations remain a key source of economic development for inner cities.

January 1, 2011
Read More

Management & Labor

Slideshow: The Oldest Town Hall Building in America

Only Pelham, Mass., can lay claim to having the oldest town hall in continuous use for town meetings.

December 1, 2010
Read More

Public Safety & Justice

The Nation's Evolving Cyber-Security Issue

Are states shoring up their defenses enough to protect critical data and computer infrastructure?

December 1, 2010
Read More

Management & Labor

America's Oldest Town Hall Meeting

The 267-year-old tradition is alive and well in Pelham, Mass.

December 1, 2010
Read More

Urban Notebook

Managing Cities' Growing Volunteer Pools

Cities are using new grant money to install ‘chief volunteer officers.’

December 1, 2010
Read More

Urban Notebook

Could Renting Be the New American Dream?

Renting and returning to urban living -- where energy costs are lower -- could be in the offing.

November 1, 2010
Read More

View

Can Boston Call the 'Big Dig' a Success?

The mega infrastructure project was supposed to make the city a less congested, more livable place to work and live. It has succeeded.

October 7, 2010
Read More

View

Local Governments Consider Privatizing Public Libraries

Cities in California and elsewhere look to save money by outsourcing public library services.

October 6, 2010
Read More

Urban Notebook

Problems in Preserving a City's Downtown District

Downtowns, the soul of every city, are hanging on.

October 1, 2010
Read More

View

Online Tool Calculates Transportation Costs

A new online tool calculates average transportation costs, shedding light on the affordability and sustainability of a community.

September 10, 2010
Read More

View

Harrisburg Edges Closer to Bankruptcy

The city of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, moved closer to bankruptcy after announcing it is broke and will miss a bond payment.

September 2, 2010
Read More

Urban Notebook

Dallas Covers Highway with Greenery

Cities are increasingly decking highways with piles of greenery and new development.

September 1, 2010
Read More

View

Budget Cuts Hit State Libraries

Public libraries aren't the only ones being targeted by budget cuts. State libraries, which serve as resources to legislatures and executives, are also just as vulnerable.

August 23, 2010
Read More

Urban Notebook

The Gentrification Effect

Does the return of a neighborhood mean its culture and the poor have to leave?

June 1, 2010
Read More

View

Suburban Streetcar Desire

While researching the the streetcar's current popularity, the term "streetcar suburb" didn't mean much to this editor until he realized he lived in one.

May 25, 2010
Read More