Governing & Living Cities Announce High-Performing Cities From the Second Equipt To Innovate® Survey

Top-ranking cities will be featured May 1 at Governing’s annual Summit on Government Performance and Innovation

SACRAMENTO, Calif., April 26, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Governing today announced the top-ranking cities from the second annual national Equipt to Innovate survey, which show a growing number of cities are becoming better prepared to respond to civic challenges in nimble and robust ways.

Equipt to Innovate is a joint initiative launched by Living Cities and Governing magazine. It is an integrated, collaborative framework anchored in seven key characteristics of high-performance government — being dynamically planned, broadly partnered, resident-involved, race-informed, smartly resourced, employee-engaged and data-driven.

Equipt sets a purposefully high bar across all seven elements, and the second annual survey shows a growing number of cities are reaching for it. Seventy-four cities participated in the 2018 survey, up 23 percent from 2017, bringing the two-year total to 97 cities. Equipt cities represent 53 million residents, including 55 of the 100 largest U.S. cities and all 10 of the largest U.S. cities.

“Residents and businesses expect cities to provide nimble and robust responses to today’s challenges and opportunities,” says Mark Funkhouser, publisher of Governing. “The results of the second annual Equipt to Innovate survey show that a critical mass of American cities – along with their diverse networks of public, private and civic institutions -- are investing in and building the many things that make communities good places to live.”

Based on the results of the second annual survey and analysis, Fayetteville, N.C., was named the top- performing city overall.

Top-ranking cities were also identified in each of the core elements:

  • Dynamically Planned – Las Vegas, NV
  • Broadly Partnered – Olathe, KS
  • Resident-Involved – Seattle, WA
  • Race-Informed – Louisville, KY
  • Smartly Resourced – San Antonio, TX
  • Employee-Engaged – Fayetteville, NC
  • Data-Driven – San Diego, CA

"It's encouraging to see city governments doing the hard work to build Equipt capabilities, particularly in areas as complex as racial equity, resident engagement and evidence-based policymaking,” says Steven Bosacker, principal of public sector and partnerships at Living Cities. “The cities we're recognizing this year are showing the way to the future."

The high-performing cities will be formally recognized May 1 at the 2018 Summit on Government Performance & Innovation, an annual gathering of 650 innovators, public sector change-agents, disrupters and civic entrepreneurs from around the country interested in making government work better for local communities.

For a comprehensive overview of the survey findings and a discussion of how cities fared across the categories, download the report “Profiles in High-Performance Government:
Cities on the Move” at

About Governing:
Governing covers politics, policy and management for state and local government leaders. Recognized as the most credible and authoritative voice in its field, Governing provides non-partisan news, insight and analysis on budget and finance; transportation and infrastructure; workforce and economic development; health and human services and more.

Governing is a division of e.Republic, the nation’s only media and research company focused exclusively on state and local government and education.

About Living Cities:
Living Cities harnesses the collective power of 18 of the world’s largest foundations and financial institutions to develop and scale new approaches for creating opportunities for low-income people and improving the cities where they live. Its investments, research, networks, and convenings catalyze fresh thinking and combine support for innovative, local approaches with real-time sharing of learning to accelerate adoption in more places. Additional information can be found at

Media Contact:
Mark Funkhouser