Civic Impact offers tools designed to help you solve problems and transform your community. If you have questions about these tools or ideas for new ones, we would love to hear from you.

Housing Affordability

The price and availability of housing is a major issue in almost every US city. To clarify the nature of this crisis, the Centers for Public Impact developed an evolving housing affordability index to visualize what is happening in your city and its peers. The app calls data the US Census Bureau API, in particular the five year estimates from the American Community Survey (ACS), which provide greater statistical reliability when compared to the single year.

Algorithms & Ethics Toolkit

Unintended consequences can arise when algorithms have significant bias and decisions are made without careful review or human input. GovEx and its partners at DataSF, the Civic Analytics Network, and Data Community DC, offer this first-of-its-kind algorithm toolkit to help government and other public sector professionals ensure automated decisions are fair and unintentional harm is minimized.

Roadmap for Policy Change

As governments address large scale problems, they often time take shortcuts based on trends or what has apparently worked in other places. With input from government practitioners and university researchers, the Center for Applied Public Research created the Roadmap for Policy Change to help governments apply what’s been effective elsewhere to their own challenges. The Roadmap offers step-by-step guidance and a strategic path to help the government rethink the way it addresses the most significant policy challenges.

Data Standards Directory

Government and other public institutions face numerous challenges dealing with open data sets – from bad definitions to unusable information. Compiled and built by GovEx and Geothink at McGill University, the Directory of Data Standards helps ensure that data sets shared with the public are more reliable and coordinated. The Directory offers a single, universal view and categorization of existing data standards especially related to public safety, building permits, public transit, and budgets.

The Centers for Civic Impact are always developing new tools based on technology trends impacting the public sector. Currently, we are working on guidance around blockchain & governance and data collectives. Please check back for new tools and email us to share your ideas about what will impact public sector decision making next.