Westminster, CO

United States


Herb Atchison


114,000 (2019)

Innovation Website
Lead Innovation Officers

Ryan Hegreness, Gregg Moss

Innovation is helping to:
  • Improve internal government operations

  • Anticipate and manage future challenges

  • Generate new sources of revenue

Critical success factors:
  • Dedicated funding

  • Focus on measurement

  • Dedicated innovation team

  • Culture of innovation in city

  • Leadership from Mayor

Spotlight on innovation in Westminster, CO

Westminster created and adopted its first Innovation Strategy in September 2019, paving the way for embedding a culture of innovation throughout the city. More than 75 city staff across all departments are participating in various innovation teams, dedicating 5 or more hours each month to innovation projects and initiatives. Westminster wants to use innovation to change the way government is perceived by both residents and employees, reimagining what is considered quality service delivery through experimentation and strategic risk-taking.

Vision and approach to innovation capacity

Along with 50% of cities surveyed, Westminster, CO has an explicit innovation strategy. Similar to more than half of cities surveyed, Westminster, CO approaches innovation capacity both from a holistic/macro level, as well as in specific policy areas.

Policy areas that Westminster, CO is focused on

Economic Development
Public works

Public works: Westminster has partnered with the Colorado Smart Cities Alliance and Arrow Electronics to conduct an ideation and implementation program with their Public Works and Utilities Division (PWU). Staff from all PWU Departments participate in a 30-day process with the goal of co-creating multiple prioritized solutions that will address their drinking water and wastewater treatment challenges. The city anticipates that this unique initiative will dramatically reduce resident/business water consumption and provide a new technology to reduce household wastewater.

Policy areas by number of cities

Westminster, CO utilizes 3 different innovation skills or roles

Project manager
Communication officer
Community engagement staff
Innovation roles by number of cities

Situated in the City Manager's office, Westminster’s dedicated innovation team consists of 2 staff. Additionally, more than 75 city staff also dedicate at least 5 hours each month to innovation initiatives.

Terms Westminster, CO most associates with innovation

Big picture re-thinking
Human-centered design

Westminster, CO's most common innovation activities

Taking risks and testing new ideas
e.g. prototyping new programs or models to address a persistent city challenge
Promoting data-driven analytics / public data management
e.g. data storage/analytics; open data; big data
Engaging residents in new ways
Facilitating organizational change within the municipality
e.g. silo-busting; new internal performance management; staff training and capacity building on innovation tools or techniques; reforms to contracting or procurement
Human-centered design
e.g. prioritizing the end-user at each stage of the design process
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

How is innovation funded here?

Like 81% of cities surveyed, Westminster, CO has dedicated funding to support innovation capacity.

Top sources of funding

Municipal budget
Municipal budget
This could include, for instance, City Council approved funds; operating budget; a special funding process (bond, Mayoral special initiative funding, etc.); and participatory budgeting / citizen-selected budgeting.
External funding
External funding
This could include private, philanthropic/non-profit and/or academic/think tank resources.
Non-financial resources
Non-financial resources
This could include staff on loan and/or other in-kind contributions (e.g. materials, infrastructure…)

Activities being funded

Idea generation & brainstorming
Investing in digital systems
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

Similar to 61% of participating cities in the 2020 survey, West Hollywood's funding for innovation capacity is also directed towards training staff and building capacity*.

*"Training staff and building capacity" is not an option in the 2018 survey, while "Launching or sustaining a project" is not an option in the 2020 survey.

How is innovation measured?

Westminster has developed partnerships to promote innovation capacity with other public agencies, private firms, and not-for-profit organizations.

Data availability by policy area


Sufficient data

Economic Development

Waste and sewage

Public works

Government finance

Built environment

Land use

Insufficient data



Policing and law enforcement




Labour market and skills

Environment and climate change

Digital governance

Social inclusion and equity



Social welfare/social services