This year, the beautiful city of Raleigh, North Carolina was the perfect place to come together with civic leaders from around North America to ponder the philosophical and practical ideas with which they are confronted in an ever-evolving framework for local governments, what the Brookings Institute would call “New Localism.” In an age where the innovation in local governments is framed in terms of technology, it was refreshing to take some time to consider the innovation happening in terms of policy and leadership.
The role of local governments in our collective future is currently evolving into a global network that is being confronted with new opportunities and challenges every day. Once again, the Alliance for Innovation was in a unique position to explore one of those opportunities in one of the most innovative and unique settings in the industry.
This event brought together great thinkers and practitioners from across the local government spectrum - including elected officials, professional managers, departments heads, academics, and the private sector - to discuss a serious issue in our country that dates back to the Declaration of Independence: the role and, most importantly, how these decisions can impact our lives in real ways from energy usage and the Internet to including autonomous vehicles in urban planning. Increasing State and Federal preemption of local government’s rights and their ability to generate revenue was front and center this year, as well as ideas on how to manage these challenges. When design thinking meets long-term and complex problems, the outcome is always surprising and wonderful to see unfold.
If you’d like to read more about the topic, click here for the Alliance’s recap of the discussion and a framework that could apply to communities’ struggles between pre-emption and local authority.
Siemens is dedicated to working with the public and private sectors to improve lives and create perfect places in our cities, towns, and villages. In North America, we have helped hundreds of cities achieve their goals, and learning more about their challenges is always a great opportunity for us. This is what makes our relationship with BIG Ideas so relevant.