Our Resources

Please enjoy the AFI resources provided here for you.  Content is designed around our Guiding Principles as well as programmatic innovations and services. 

Filters and tags can be used to search for content on a specific topic or author, and the general search bar will search all site content for the selected keywords. 

Please contact us at info@transformgov.org with any questions or technical issues.


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Jim Twombly, City Manager of Aurora, Colorado, shares how he leveraged communication, compassion, and genuine connection to lead city staff through not only adapting to but embracing changing work environments.

With efforts to further develop the onboarding process, local governments have reimagined the developmental experience for new hires.

Local government uses of VR/AR technology are centered on emergency/first responder training and public interaction and have varied applications in service.

Examples and approaches for Kata (Lean Strategy), Continuous Improvement/Innovation and/or Human-Centered Design in highly regulated departments (public safety, sheriff, etc).

In 2018, the City of Durham, NC launched an innovative new program in partnership with our Courts, District Attorney, and multiple community partners called the Durham Expunction and Restoration (DEAR) program to remove barriers to employment caused by license suspensions and criminal records.

Do first responders’ services and scope of responsibilities align with community needs based on the types of calls for service coming to 911 centers? A newly launched study seeks to answer this question.

Tom Bonfield is a local government superstar and is now sharing some of his wisdom and learned lessons from his 40+ years in local government.

Efficient Strategies for Preschool Teacher Recruitment and Retention

Over the past few decades, activists and communities have demanded further action to improve environmental practices and emergency response efforts within local government. How can local governments measure their progress towards environmental sustainability?

Implementing Telecommuting Policies in Your Organization for the Long Term

Hear from the City of Grand Rapids, MI as they discuss lessons learned from Bridge GR, an event series championing economic vitality and diversity in their community.

Kathleen Kennedy, Director of Innovation and Sustainability at Springfield Township, shares how her team used AFI Antifragile principles as a guide through uncertain times.

Hear from ResourceX CEO, Chris Fabian, as he shares how making data-driven budget decisions can provide solutions to achieve foundational results, outcomes, and thrive in this video webinar.

Increasing affordable housing options to fill the widening gap between single-family detached homes and mid-rise apartments or condos us being considered in more US cities.

As local governments look to strengthen the security of their IT systems against malware, especially with the upcoming election, CIS and DHS are offering an effective, no-cost solution through a new security service available to local and state government partners.

High-profile cases such as the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor have led some community and government leaders to reimagine policing in America. Four potential components of police reform being discussed now are policy operation reform, police funding, commitment to transparency and accountability, and benchmarking.

Municipalities across the U.S. are grappling with how to provide services and shelter for the unhoused in their communities. The City of Alameda collaborated with Village of Love to provide an innovative safe parking site and one-stop-shop for human and housing services.

Hear from 2020 Innovation Award winners City of Virginia Beach and Village of Bayside as they share how they are working to improve the relationship between law enforcement and their communities in this video webinar.

Hear from Drucker Institute's Rick Wartzman and AFI's Joel Carnes as they discuss Bendable, the institute's community-based lifelong learning system in this video webinar.

What can your municipality do to ensure your community has the resources and infrastructure to support autonomous vehicles?

Innovative and efficient solutions in staffing city commissions.

What efforts are communities implementing to reform their police departments? How can cities use benchmarking data to understand these reforms impact?

Learn how municipalities have created and structured positions focused on diversity, equity, and inclusion.

What measures can be taken to recover from and prepare for weather-related devastation?

The COVID-19 pandemic has created new challenges in childcare for local government employees. Municipalities are stepping up to provide collaborative and innovative childcare solutions for their employees.

What are some childcare solutions in local government to assist employees during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Robert Bell discusses how shifting your mindset about what innovation means can make a big impact.

As City Halls and County Offices begin to slowly re-open, the crippling impact of this pandemic on our local economies is waiting inside to greet us. As we all “rush to treatment”, this webinar series provides some diagnostic tips, techniques and tools that were successful in combating the impacts of the Great Recession and are perhaps even more applicable as we face today’s fiscal crisis.

The City of Virginia Beach discusses their experience in building relationships between youth and public safety professionals in their community.

By focusing on antifragility, local governments can emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic stronger than ever before.

Lawrence Greenspun of the Drucker Institute shares his experience about how organizations can come together during a crisis and how a strong mission statement can go a long way.

The City of Goodyear, AZ shares the actions their Economic Development team took to support local businesses amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The City of Goodyear, AZ shares how their Parks & Rec. team transitioned programming to a virtual platform.

AFI Members are responding to the COVID-19 pandemic with their communities in mind.

An Interview with Lawrence Greenspun, Director of Public Sector Engagement, Drucker Institute

Have we learned anything from past recessions? Learn from Jim Ley's 36 years of public service experience about how to uphold fiscal sustainability in a crisis.

Here are 6 of the innovator’s most productive strategies to determine the best new things to do for our organizations and our communities.

Are there member communities who have established best practices for re-opening businesses, city hall, etc., after COVID-19? Working collaboratively with other municipalities on creating uniform re-opening plans. Cities may be a little unique if they did not have a statewide Stay-at-Home Order and had to take on restrictions individually.

The Alliance for Innovation spoke with economist and futurist Rebecca Ryan of Next Generation Consulting about how communities can focus on strong and values-based leadership to adapt and persevere through a crisis.

The Alliance for Innovation spoke with Thomas Reeves, Communications & Media Relations Officer for the City of Modesto, CA about how to communicate during a crisis

After COVID-19, is "back to normal" the best we can do. Dr. Peter Bishop, Rebecca Ryan and a community of over 130 participants to discuss brighter future.

Join Mark Funkhouser, Nick Kittle and Rebecca Ryan who share solid advice with local governments on how to manage budgets and leverage innovation during the COVID pandemic.

Leading futurist Rebecca Ryan shares tools you need to tackle any challenge.

Cities must empower, engage, encourage residents to withstand crisis.

What innovative products are available to support two key functions they deal with regularly: Constituent reporting (like a SeeClickFix type of mobile reporting of issues) and also Strategic Plan execution?

What communities and cities are evaluating the way they collect customer service feedback? What research exists on effectively capturing meaningful feedback from citizens to gauge quality of customer service? What communities have identified solid customer service performance measures? Looking for ways to provide valuable feedback (beyond 6 rating questions, 1-5, that give no substantive data.

The Alliance for Innovation spoke with Tom Bonfield, City Manager of Durham, NC about the city's affordable housing strategy

Transforming Local Government presenter, The City of San Diego, CA, shares how their "Connect. Support. House." strategy has helped to acknowledge and reduce homelessness in their community.

The City and County of Denver, explains how their Love My Air Program uses data and community partnership to create a healthier Denver.

Listing of resources and references to help manage during the COVID-19 crisis

National Animal Care & Control Association's statement on animal services during time of crisis

The City of Montogomery, OH, shares their journey on educating their community to embrace their neighbors and make Montgomery a welcoming community in the face of intolerance.

Transforming Local Government presenter, The City of Aukland, New Zealand, shares how they shifted citizen behavior to use self-serve online city services and re-engineered their top 10 services.

The City of Shawnee, KS uses data governance to transform their response to fire emergencies and create a safer community.

Alliance for Innovation CEO, Joel Carnes, spoke with Darrin Atteberry, City Manager of Fort Collins, CO, about the city's journey in achieving high-speed municipal broadband.

High-speed broadband is increasingly becoming an indicator of economic prosperity for communities

Pam Davis of the City of Boulder uncovers the responsibility local government leaders have to ensure that innovation makes their organizations more just, equitable and accessible

Hear from Austin, TX on how they have developed an i-team to drive their innovation efforts. nextERA member David Rauch gives an overview in this 20-min session.

Join nextERA member Greg Stopka to learn about an approach and lessons on building a Problem-Solving Innovation Strategy.

A member city is interested in finding out what other cities do to accommodate their residents with disabilities for services like trash collection. Sometimes cities provide door pick-up for residents who need special assistance. What do other cities might do and how they communicate, track, review such services; and if there are any concerns to be aware of? Additionally, there might be services in other cities to adopt related to water services.

There are a few member communities that are interested in establishing a collaborative relationship with their local academic institutions. Are there examples of MOUs or other agreements that local governments have in place to facilitate these relationships?

What are good measures of 'utilization' and what is a reasonable expectation for shift fire employees?

We are looking for innovative and best practices for utility discount programs to reduce impacts to low income households, increase equity and support overall community well being.

What are some examples of a dignified discourse/anti-bullying/public engagement code of conduct-type of guide or policy?

What are the best practices for a local government to dispose/sell its electronic waste, and supporting processes?

What are other cities doing as it relates to Community Oriented Policing?

I’m currently working on a research project for City Council on cities/counties/special districts/states that are using a racial equity instrument in their budgeting process.

Alliance for Innovation CEO Joel Carnes spoke with Darin Atteberry, City Manager of Fort Collins, CO about the City’s journey towards achieving high-speed municipal broadband.

Henderson, Nevada shares their journey in creating innovation and performance excellence programs in their organization and offers best practices.

Examples of innovation committees (both from cities and counties) including their purpose, how they operate, and what interaction they have with the staff in developing and executing innovation strategies.

What local government cities/counties provide Student Loan Repayment Assistance?

Case studies on lean government and process improvement in local government.

See how some cities are taking an innovative approach to deter panhandling while promoting donations to bolster services for homeless populations.

Utilize this compilation of data governance policies, training materials, tools used, and lessons learned to create a data governance program in your municipality.

The City of Olathe’s leadership knows the value of having a culture of innovation. Learn how the city has worked carefully toward building innovation into our culture in multiple ways over multiple years.

Grand Rapids, MI is using data to improve health and equity in their community.

The city of Glendale, Arizona recently implemented a unique program to leverage the presence of private sector rideshare programs to address an age-old problem – underutilization of fleet vehicles.

Considerations in switching to municipal elected governance.

What are some new or innovative revenue growth and diversification strategies are that are in use in local governments?

"What are some best practices in implementing a living wage or living wage policies?"

Athens-Clarke County shares its innovation efforts in their organization. Their innovation story shows how investing in innovation brings positive organizational change and effective solutions to local government.

Interested in researching customer relationship management approaches and deployment of CRM software

Employee who can adapt to rapid change and quickly learn new skills will become more important than a specialist for municipal governments.

The City of Roseville, CA and Balancing share innovative tools in balancing your budget and community priorities in this video presentation.

AFI and the City of Bloomington, MN share how ties and networks can strengthen organizations in this video workshop.

AFI and the City of Salisbury, NC share how they have built a strong organizational culture that encourages innovation among employees in this video workshop.

Learn best practices for launching an innovation program for your organization in this video workshop.

Learn of the City of Sequim, WA took an innovative approach to maintaining vegetation in their community in this video seminar!

What approaches are local governments taking at the local and regional level to address homelessness?

What approaches are local governments taking at the local and regional level to address affordable housing?

Local government staff communications with council

What are best practices in employee exit procedures.

What do other entities do in terms of contract management?

How can emergency evacuation protocols be more accessible to people with disabilities?

How can Public Safety Departments strengthen home security camera programs?

Private and public sector models for Innovation Programs (including employee suggestion programs and kaizen/brainstorming events).

The City of Arvada, CO shares their process in creating meaningful staff participation through employee committees in this video session

This interactive webinar is designed to help you practice starting a conversation about shared hopes and dreams for the future of your community. Participants will work to develop a personal narrative and practice sharing it with others.

Local governments have tons of data, but many still struggle to use it effectively. If you’re looking for ways to boost organizational effectiveness, successfully implement strategy, and build public trust through better performance management, watch this webinar. We explore practical tools and tactics you can start using now!

Learn all about the City of Olympia’s first Action Plan—not so much a “plan” as a transformative shift in how we as a community annually double-down on achieving that vision and sharing our progress in this video webinar.

This presentation is intended to give the participant the tools and insight to develop accurate internal data and be empowered to identify costs associated as well as mitigation strategies.

In this video seminar AFI and Cynthia Campbell, Water Resource Management Advisor for City of Phoenix share how Tucson and Phoenix came together and forged an alliance that benefits more than 50% of the population of Arizona through an agreement that moves water through time.

Learn how the Town of Chapel Hill has turned to data and performance measures to better understand this challenge, inform decision making, track progress, and change the narrative on affordable housing in this webinar.

Learn about Durham County's youth STEM program the Bionomic Educational Training Center.

View this webinar to hear from the City of Goodyear, Arizona, and Meet TOM (Topics on the Move), a unique engagement tool deployed in the City of Goodyear, to collect public input where stakeholders are found.

What can you do to help residents to get where they need to go if you do not have the residential density nor data to inform decision-making?

What are private and public sector models for customer service standards (including metrics and facility amenities)

Any models of areas that have formed Disaster Recovery/Resilience councils that include business, government, education, and nonprofits?

What GRC Software is available in managing PCI, CIJS, and HIPAA compliance?

How can the digital divide be addressed by local governments?

What are best practices in creating regional innovation districts?

How can cross-sector collaborations be facilitated and measured for efficiency?

Discover best practices in rapid rehousing post-disaster.

Program created to maximize civic engagement in addressing community challenges

Learn about Campus West Connections, a community-oriented policing concept that connects the community to organizations and services to increase the quality of life for community members in this video webinar.

Provide examples of cities using data driven platforms such as iDashboard effectively.

What tools and services can be used to efficiently handle body camera footage?

What are local government processes of funding innovation projects internally?

Does offering financial incentives to municipal government employees increase the quality and number of innovations brought to fruition?

Discover some of the best managed counties in the U.S. according to citizen satisfaction and industry data.

Countermeasures for improving safety on two-lane rural roads. Can include components such as recommendations on safe three lane rural road designs.

Learn about Innovation by Design, a Hennepin County creative problem-solving approach based in human-centered design in this video presentation.

SKIP to 2:58 for the main presentation http://www.bit.ly/opioidcrisis1 (Session Slidedeck)http://www.bit.ly/opioidcrisis2 (Post Discussion Guide) “The opioid epidemic knows no boundaries. It has cut …

Learn from Milwaukee County and City of Norfolk, VA, two of the most creative and committed local governments when it comes to budget engagement.

What is a good way to manage social media interactions outside of regular working hours?

Block chain technology can be used in many different aspects such as cybersecurity, disaster recovery, supply chain transparency, title registries, communications amongst organizations and document verification.

Join the Alliance for Innovation and Kim Newcomer, CEO and Founder of Slate Communications, for an exciting look at ways to take your local government communication strategies to the next level and set your organization up to pursue innovations!

Pushed by limited resources, staff capacity, and project accountability and outcomes, local governments continue to implement and adapt Lean Six Sigma practices to their organization. But now that you have started your lean journey, how do you sustain these efforts and manage a larger, cultural transformation of continuous improvement.

Learn how to leverage data analytics, cloud technologies and voice-assisted devices to enhance community preparedness, strengthen flood mitigation efforts and inform critical decision-making.

Join the Alliance and the Mecklenburg County, North Carolina as they present ‘Building with our Veterans’, which places qualified veterans in a year-long apprenticeship with experienced Mecklenburg County code officials serving as mentors, while completing classroom training at the local community college.

Join the Alliance and Grant Yee, Administrative Services & Finance Director, City of Ontario, CA as he presents his extraordinary findings through a personal journey of human leadership in this video presentation.

The Valley Benchmark Cities Group (VBC) began in October 2011 as a consortium of staff from the largest cities and towns in …

Many local government neighborhood programs provide opportunities for community members to meet one another. Some even work to develop better relationships with local government operators. But how many do these programs truly empower their residents to build social capital within their neighborhoods and manage their neighborhood investments? Meet the Neighborhood Engagement Program!

From report cards to online data visualization. You can make in-house dashboards work for your organization learn how in this video webinar.

In this webinar learn how to keep plans and performance efforts off the shelf and in the heads, hearts, and hands of the people who will make a difference

Join the Alliance for Innovation and Innovation Academy team members from Glendale, AZ and Olathe, KS for some insights and takeaways on their innovation academy experience and impact on their organization in this video presentation.

In this video presentation the cities of Ferndale, Michigan and Eagan, Minnesota discuss their journeys and share their lessons, along with some of the tips they learned along the way. Both will show how their Fabulous Flops were ultimately transformed into Fabulous Feats!

In this session, Terri Runyan, Performance Excellence Program Manager with the City of Fort Collins, Colorado sheds some light on their journey to organizational excellence and shares how you can set your organization on the same, results oriented path!

In this video presentation, learn about an innovative approach to civic matchmaking to meet both the social service needs of the community and the community engagement desires of the local retiree population!

In this video webinar, rethink budget preparation with OpenGov. Countless hours are spent on a spreadsheet reconciliations when you could be talking about budget priorities.

This video webinar features the Alliance for Innovation and panelists John Van Horn, President and Publisher of Parking Today and Mitch Osur, Director of Parking and Downtown Services, City of Aspen for a conversation about innovative parking policies and strategies.

Join the Alliance with Cory Miller and Brian Dempsey of University Area Joint Authority, PA for an in-depth look at their beneficial water reuse system and the results for their community in State College, PA in this video presentation.

EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) can automate the process of issuing POs and entering invoices. Watch this video webinar from our Partners at Edict Systems to find out how to implement an EDI solution in your organization while maintaining controls and audit process.

Watch this video workshop with AFI and Paul Mackie, Director of Research and Communications with the Arlington County, Virginia Mobility Lab and Randall Rutsch, Senior Transportation Planner with the City of Boulder, Colorado for a review of their cutting edge, but impactful transportation strategies.

Join the Alliance for Innovation and panelists from the Town of Queen Creek, Arizona for a on their economic development strategy around Agritourism in this video webinar.

Learn about the Tempe Grease Cooperative in this video webinar that explores innovative public private partnerships.

Learn how municipalities are partnering with Uber in this video presentation.

Do you need to be innovative to be a great leader? What about consistent? Or, loyal? For Decatur, Georgia City Manager Peggy Merriss, those have been the benchmarks for her career, amongst others. Learn about what it takes to be an innovative city manager in this video presentation.

Local governments' greatest source for solutions is their staff, the professionals dealing with these tasks all day, every day. But, how can you better hear and act on their ideas?

AFI shares innovative practices on how to serve residents without homes in this video workshop.

Some of our favorite moments in any urban area are when we are exploring park. Explore the kind of amenities public investment in parks can provide communities in this video presentation.

Learn how local governments can work with entrepreneurs and tap into start-ups to deliver better results in this video workshop.

Engage in a conversation about cultivating smart cities in this video workshop

From career planning to dealing with the politics of the position, local government managers deal with a variety of issues, big and small. Learn from local government professionals about navigating career goals in this video workshop.

Learn how supervisors can relinquish control and increase trust in their subordinates in this video workshop.

Join Chris Miller, SAFEbuilt Regional Director, to learn five important questions local government leaders should be discussing with their Building Department professionals. This webinar will provide the in’s and out’s of successful Building Departments and real life solutions that will reduce concerns, improve customer satisfaction, and get your construction projects back on track.

Learn about green purchasing policies in this video workshop.

Learn how to engage your community in the city planning process in this video workshop.

From the BIG Ideas 2017 to virtual session, local gov't innovators to continue to share their unique perspective, navigating between state and local political dichotomies.

During the one hour webinar you will hear an overview from Zach Markovits, Director of City Programs with What Works Cities. And presenters from the City of Charlotte, NC, Tulsa, Oklahoma and Scottsdale, AZ will share their organizations journey with you including how they got started, what their work encompasses, what were their challenges and lessons learned.

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Learn best practices in public-nonprofit partnerships in this video webinar.

Learn about implementing Lean Six Sigma techniques in this video webinar.

Learn from AFI's Innovation Academy Alumni of 2017 in this video webinar.

Join AFI with Kevin Desouza, Foundation Professor with the School of Public Affairs at Arizona State University as he shares his framework and connects issues of strategy, technology, data governance, and analytical knowledge in this video workshop.

Kevin C. Desouza at Arizona State University conducted a series of interviews of city managers and staff to better understand how local governments are using data.

Learn about the International Association of Public Participation's (IAP2) Spectrum of Public Participation as a framework for how governments engage the public in decision-making processes in this video presentation.

A solid crisis communication plan and advance preparation permits a local government to be proactive instead of reactive.

Following a four year general budget deficit paired with financial scrutiny the Lower Providence Township had to declare the problems they were having and decide how to go about changing them.

Two local govt. experts suggest six questions managers should ask.

During this video webinar, you will hear a discussion on the broad impacts emerging technologies will have and continue to have on our communities and discuss the role of local government in these conversations.

How can US local governments learn from abroad in order to better address their jurisdiction’s problems and their residents’ needs?

Is your organization prepared for the increased competition and demands of attracting and retaining the future workforce?

The County of Navajo, Arizona requested the development of budgetary tools and long-term financial planning models that align with the County’s Strategic Plan in an effort to strengthen fiscal sustainability

A free civic engagement tool for local governments to understand their readiness and capacity for engagement.

Identifying patterns of grievances, how grievance policies are designed, and whether there is any relationship between the design of grievance policies and their outcomes

The Collaborative Services Decision Matrix Tool is the second product from the Enhanced Research Partnership.

Lifecycle of resilience systems (crisis, transformation, and renewal) and role of economic vulnerability and resilience play in ensuring a city's future resilence.

City of Fort Collins developed the Strategic Risk Management program

A white paper written by The Government Finance Officers Association on how to effectively design and implement a priority-based budget plan for a given municipality.

Continuation of a series of basic diagnostic questions, the manager will gain a better assessment of the positive signs of the organization’s fiscal health and the root causes of the fiscal “dis-ease” impacting long-term financial sustainability.

This article from the September issue of PM Magazine discusses the basic diagnostic questions that a city manager must ask in order to gain a better understanding of the organization's fiscal health.

PM Magazine discusses priority based budgeting and the financial crisis.

As the fiscal downturn began to affect local governments worldwide, ICMA and the Alliance for Innovation began a longitudinal study of its impact and the creative responses of cities and counties. This article summarizes their findings.

The Alliance and ASU School of Public Affairs, have developed the Six Qualities of Innovation, which is the result of hundreds of case study reviews of local governments

Building stronger partnerships, increased resilience and disaster resistance for a safer nation

As the fiscal crisis around the country threatens more and more local governments, officials are faced with increasing challenges and a need for immediate action. The vision and the leadership of elected officials describes how local government actions can contribute to the economic recovery.

Long-term financial planning combines financial forecasting with financial strategizing to identify future challenges and opportunities, causes of fiscal imbalances, and strategies to secure financial sustainability.

Risk mgt. is the process of assessing risk and shows how traditional risk mgt. is being applied to new areas of local gov.