January 10, 2019

City Innovate Announces 40 Startups Selected by 22 Governments to Participate in Ground-Breaking 16-week Program

San Francisco, CA — Today, City Innovate announced the 40 startups selected through a competitive process that will participate in its 2019 Startup in Residence (STIR) program.  Nearly 700 startups vied for a chance to work with 22 governments for the opportunity to secure a contract. The selected startups will volunteer their time with government agencies over 16-weeks to tackle civic challenges with new technology tools and services.

This year the startups will focus on improving disaster response coordination and communication; connecting low-income renters with micro lenders to more quickly access their security deposit; providing dynamic routing support software for transit buses and many more.

In 2018, the program launched in 11 cities across the United States. STIR is now in 22 governments across the US and Canada and has worked with nearly 100 startups. See all the 2019 STIR team partnerships here.

“The Startup in Residence program is a model for civic innovation and national collaboration,” said Jay Nath, former Chief Innovation Officer for San Francisco and Executive Director for City Innovate. “This program is a unique opportunity for government agencies and startups to think creatively about how we can work together to modernize government to benefit residents.”

“The STIR program has provided countless benefits for the City of Syracuse,” said Adria Finch, Syracuse Chief Innovation Officer.  “Not only have we identified companies to help us solve City challenges, but we have also adopted new techniques to improve our procurement, advanced innovation and technology budgeting practices, and identified new employees to drive change throughout the organization.  We’ve already learned so much from City Innovate, and we are excited to continue our partnership.”

Past projects have included working on issues such as streamlining the foster care application process, smart sensors on trash cans, homeless health services, volunteer engagement tools, and developing tools to assess the damage in the aftermath of an emergency like an earthquake or flooding.  Startups can register on StartupinResidence.org to be notified of new challenges.

Through the Technology Advisory Board, the program offers startups the opportunity to work with industry leaders to improve their product, form partnerships, and help scale their impact.  Industry leaders include Accela, Citi Ventures, Cubic, Esri, Google, Mexichem, Microsoft, Oracle, Panasonic, and Visa.

“The Startup in Residence Program is a tremendous example of a public-private partnership working to tackle some of the biggest challenges facing cities and states,” said Gary Kovacs, CEO of Accela. “One of my goals is to help drive the next shift in government innovation and Accela’s partnership with STIR is a catalyst to further modernize government and build thriving communities.”

“Visa is excited to engage with City Innovate to address challenges facing cities today in an increasingly connected, on-the-go world. Visa looks forward to collaborating with the talented entrepreneurs and public sector partners in the design, development and execution of civic-minded mobility, technology and commerce solutions,” said Dan Sanford, Vice President, Consumer Products, Visa.

“One of the things that sets us apart from other programs for startups is the deliberate way we are focused on supporting these companies in their efforts to find customers, which is one of the most challenging tasks facing young companies,” said Scott Mauvais, Director of Civic Innovation, Microsoft. “In that vein, the work City Innovate is doing with its growing STIR program, where they have improved year by year their startups’ chances of product-market fit within the public sector, is also a perfect fit for Microsoft.  We are happy to join in their efforts by opening up our sales channels, providing enterprise help and support, and offering Azure credits through the Microsoft for Startups program.”

“Esri is pleased to embark on a partnership with STIR to support solving civic challenges with governments and startups,” said Christian Carlson, Esri Director State, Local, and Provincial Government. “Esri’s ArcGIS platform has long been recognized as a comprehensive system for enabling location intelligence capabilities in the public sector. Through this collaboration, we are excited to provide startups with the software, development environments, and resources to create innovative civic applications across areas such as mobility, civic engagement, IoT, resiliency, process improvement, and more to help governments meet their missions.”

“Promoting civic responsibility through entrepreneurship remains core to our mission at Google Cloud for Startups; I am excited to support organizations – like City Innovate – creating innovative models for civic engagement and collaboration across the tech and public sectors,” said Jason Scott, Startup Program Lead, Google Cloud for Startups.

The program also offers education for government and startup staff in areas including design thinking, lean methodologies, procurement, civic technology trends, and new methods of product development and procurement.


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Additional quotes and interview opportunities available upon request.


About STIR: Startup in Residence (STIR) connects startups with government agencies to develop technology products that solve real civic challenges through a 16-week program. In 2018, the program launched in 11 cities across the United States. STIR is now in 22 governments across the US and Canada and has worked with nearly 100 startups. See all the 2019 STIR team partnerships here. To learn more about Startup in Residence visit: https://startupinresidence.org.