Despite all the metropolitan fiscal problems you hear about, many American cities are hitting new highs in education and health.
This is because they’re increasingly relying on huge data sets to design policy. NYPD’s Compstat program honed and enhanced its crime-fighting strategies, and in the past few years, Denver’s use of analytics raised test scores around 20 percent. The data doesn’t do the work itself, though; human workers must orient data evaluation toward a valuable target.
It’s the rosy side of government’s exploitation of new technology.