United States


Vi Lyles


859,035 (2017)

Lead Innovation Officer

Jeff Stovall

Innovation is helping to:
  • Improve resident outcomes

  • Improve service delivery

  • Anticipate and manage future challenges

Critical success factors:
  • Dedicated innovation team

  • Leadership from Mayor

  • Culture of innovation in city

  • Support from outside city administration

Spotlight on innovation in Charlotte

Note: The City Innovation Snapshot (PDF version) was produced in 2019 and some aggregate findings have been updated with the latest survey results below.

Vision and approach to innovation capacity

Along with 50% of cities surveyed, Charlotte does not have an explicit innovation strategy. Similar to more than half of cities surveyed, Charlotte approaches innovation capacity both from a holistic/macro level, as well as in specific policy areas.

Policy areas that Charlotte is focused on

Environment and climate change
Policing and law enforcement
Policy areas by number of cities

Charlotte utilizes 4 different innovation skills or roles

Project manager
Data scientist
Community engagement staff
Innovation roles by number of cities

As an independent body, Charlotte’s innovation work is led by the Chief Innovation Officer who manages around 150 staff in charge of innovative and operational duties.

Terms Charlotte most associates with innovation

Data analytics
Transformational services

Charlotte's most common innovation activities

Rethinking approaches to financing and partnerships
e.g. new public-private-partnerships; collaboration with neighboring jurisdictions
  1. 1

    Taking risks or testing new ideas

  2. 2

    Data-driven analytics/public data management

  3. 3

    Engaging residents in new ways

  4. 4

    Developing new solutions based on digital technologies

  5. 5

    Organizational change within the municipality

  6. 6

    Human-centered design

  7. 7

    Rethinking your city’s approach to financing partnerships

Its innovation activities also include promoting data-driven analytics and developing new solutions based on digital technologies.

How is innovation funded here?

Like 19% of cities surveyed, Charlotte does not have dedicated funding to support innovation capacity.

Top sources of funding

Charlotte has no reported sources of funding.

Activities being funded

Charlotte does not fund any specific activities.

47 cities
Launching or sustaining a project
79 cities
Idea generation & brainstorming
51 cities
Investing in digital systems
36 cities
Investing in physical infrastructure
30 cities
Paying for services

Charlotte does not explicitly fund any particular activities.

How is innovation measured?

Charlotte has developed partnerships to promote its innovation capacity with other public agencies, private firms, not-for-profit organizations, and city residents/resident associations.

To improve data use, the city has also developed data partnerships with the private sector, academia, and think tanks to collect and analyze data.

Data availability by policy area


Sufficient data

Policing and law enforcement

Environment and climate change

Insufficient data


Housing and built environment


Social inclusion and equity

No Response

Economic Development



Waste and sewage

Labour market and skills


Public works


Digital governance