Winston-Salem, NC

United States


Allen Joines


243,447 (2018)

Innovation Website
Lead Innovation Officer

Meridith Martin

Innovation is helping to:
  • Improve service delivery

  • Save costs and improve efficiency within the public sector

  • Improve internal government operations

Critical success factors:
  • Dedicated funding

  • Focus on measurement

  • Culture of innovation in city

  • Leadership from Mayor

Spotlight on innovation in Winston-Salem, NC

Winston-Salem is home to several universities, and the city plans to pursue partnerships with these critical institutions as part of its budding innovation program. Its open data portal is one key step toward making the instruments for public sector innovation available, and its Office of Performance and Accountability manages a data bank used to assess the efficacy of city programs. The city is establishing the Strategic Initiatives Administrator position to direct innovation projects, and plans to allocate funding for smart city technology.

Vision and approach to innovation capacity

Along with 50% of cities surveyed, Winston-Salem, NC does not have an explicit innovation strategy. Similar to 20% of cities surveyed, Winston-Salem, NC approaches innovation capacity from a holistic/macro level.

Policy areas that Winston-Salem, NC is focused on

Winston-Salem, NC does not prioritise policy sectors for its innovation work.

Policy areas by number of cities

Innovation skills or roles

Winston-Salem does not currently have a dedicated innovation team. However, the city’s newly-created Strategic Initiatives Administrator position collaborates with other departments, including the Information Systems Department, Office of Performance and Accountability, and Budget and Evaluation Office to explore innovative practices and technologies.

Innovation roles by number of cities

Terms Winston-Salem, NC most associates with innovation

Data analytics
Technological innovation

Winston-Salem, NC's most common innovation activities

Promoting data-driven analytics / public data management
e.g. data storage/analytics; open data; big data
  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 19% of cities surveyed, Winston-Salem, NC does not have dedicated funding to support innovation capacity.

Top sources of funding

Winston-Salem, NC has no reported sources of funding.

Activities being funded

Winston-Salem, NC 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

*"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?

Winston-Salem has not yet developed partnerships to promote innovation capacity and improve data use with other entities outside the city administration.

Data availability by policy area


Sufficient data



Economic Development

Policing and law enforcement

Government finance

Waste and sewage

Public works


Built environment


Land use

Insufficient data

Digital governance


Environment and climate change

Social inclusion and equity

Labour market and skills

No Response



Social welfare/social services