With the second iteration of the Startup in Residence Program, four Northern California cities are gaining valuable tools and resources for citizens while chosen startups are earning persuasive use cases to help them scale into the gov tech market.
To harvest startup talent, cities don’t have to be tech Meccas — but a partnership with one certainly helps.
On Sept. 16, the California cities of Oakland, San Leandro and West Sacramento will join San Francisco in showcasing the new digital tools and services that materialized during the first regional Startup in Residence program (STiR) that brought in 14 tech startups for 16 weeks.
The startups unleashed their diverse skill sets on a host of civic maladies, devising solutions for foster care, law enforcement, city finances and preschool, to name a few, and coordinating with appropriate city departments and the San Francisco Mayor’s Office of Civic Innovation.
If results are like San Francisco’s in-house pilot in 2014, the cities are apt to gain valuable tools and resources for citizens, while the startups — eager to expand their commercial footprints — will earn persuasive use cases and government supporters to scale into the gov tech market.
STiR builds on this influence by serving as a mechanism for regional gov tech research and development. Only last July, at the opening of the city’s innovation lab SuperPublic — an endeavor supported by the General Services Administration — did San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee elaborate on the strategy to advance civic efforts through local, regional, state and even federal collaboration.
While it seems voluntary and innovative to do it now, we’re actually creating the conditions for the private sector, for the public sector, for academia, for those that are in government that want to innovate.
Lee said at the SuperPublic launch event. “We’re trying to create the conditions now so there is a lot more opportunity in the future to be successful.”