Earlier this month, 350 leaders from 91 cities met in New York City for Bloomberg Philanthropies’ What Works Cities (WWC) Summit to discuss how to improve outcomes for residents using data. The Harvard Kennedy School Government Performance Lab (GPL), which helps cities adopt results-driven contracting strategies through WWC, moderated several panels, including a panel of how city leaders are leveraging procurements to advance their cities’ priorities.
Many interesting ideas came up in those conversations:

  1. Procurement and data can be powerful tools especially if there is a clear connection to people’s lives.
  2. Transforming the culture around procurement.
  3. Rotating staff between programmatic and procurement functions.
  4. Business as usual can be the riskiest procurement approach.
  5. Strategies for improving vendor diversity can enhance vendor experience and procurement outcomes more broadly.
  6. Open contracting data and community engagement to improve accountability of cities and vendors.
  7. Providing a level playing field for new bidders.
  8. Cities are far from the goal post when it comes to results-driven contracting but the work will get easier as progress is made.

To read more of the top insights about procurement and contracting from the What Works Cities Summit, click here.

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