In the Press

Framingham, MA Makes Strides Toward Inclusive Civic Engagement

Next City, February, 25, 2021

Framingham, Massachusetts, a former mill and manufacturing hub 20 miles west of Boston, is ramping up fresh efforts to improve civic engagement, small business support and local transportation for its densely populated southeast corner.

Most Mayors Oppose Defunding the Police

Florida Daily, February, 15, 2021

During recent protests over police brutality, members of the left offered a new slogan: “Defund the Police.” While the call gained popularity is a few cities, its support from local officials has drastically dropped in the new year. A new survey conducted by Boston University shows that 80 percent of American mayors say their local police spending is about right and they do not support defunding it.

Baltimore’s New Mayor Rethinks Police Funding

WXXI News, January, 31, 2021

Now we’d like to talk about defunding the police. That was one of the most significant and provocative ideas to emerge from the wave of racial justice protests that took place throughout the country last year. The slogan speaks to a call to reallocate money away from policing per se to other kinds of interventions to address ideas that many people believe contribute to violence and instability in communities, such as mental health challenges and addiction. It was, as we said, a provocative idea. Some Democrats argue it’s just common sense to move away from strategies that have not worked. But others found the slogan politically toxic.

Survey shows ‘inconsistencies’ in how mayors view policing, reform

Smart Cities Dive, January, 29, 2021

A majority of U.S. mayors acknowledge the racial disparities in how police treat residents, but are not embracing the radical changes called for in policing, according to the Menino Survey of Mayors published this week by the Boston University’s Initiative on Cities.

Poll: Mayors acknowledge police violence as a problem but are resistant to major reforms

Axios, January, 28, 2021

Roughly 60% of U.S. mayors acknowledge police violence is a “problem in their communities,” but 80% believe their police departments “do a good job” attracting “well-suited” officers, according to results of the 2020 Menino Survey of Mayors published Wednesday.

80% of US mayors don’t see need to defund police, survey finds

Fox, January, 27, 2021

The majority of American mayors think that their police department doesn’t need to be defunded, according to a new survey on mayors from both parties. Eighty percent of mayors said their city’s police department’s funding was “about right,” according to the Menino Survey of Mayors, conducted by the Boston University Initiative on Cities over the summer and published this month.

Mayors Reflect On Police Relationships With Residents Of Color In Report

NPR, January, 27, 2021

A report gathers the views of mayors from cities across the U.S. about policing in their cities, law enforcement relationships with residents of color and police funding.

80 percent of mayors surveyed say police budgets ‘about right’

The Hill, January, 27, 2021

A new survey shows that 80 percent of mayors think the police budget for their city is “about right” after protests over the summer called for the defunding of police and for resources to be reallocated to social services. The Menino Survey of Mayors conducted by Boston University’s Initiative on Cities surveyed 130 mayors across the country about policing and protests. The survey included 68 percent Democratic mayors and 20 percent Republican mayors.

Most U.S. Mayors Do Not Support Reallocating Police Resources, Survey Finds

NPR, January, 27, 2021

The vast majority of mayors in American cities do not support sweeping changes to the funding of their police departments, and most say last year’s racial justice protests were a force for good in their cities, according to a new survey of more than 100 mayors from across the U.S.

IoC Survey Reveals Mayors’ Thoughts on Last Year’s Protests against Police Brutality

BU Today, January, 27, 2021

In the wake of the protests, BU’s Initiative on Cities (IoC) annual Menino Survey of Mayors surveyed US mayors about whether they believe police violence is a problem in their community, what they saw as their role during the protests in their communities, and their plans to reform their police departments. The 2020 Menino Survey of Mayors report, released Wednesday, January 27, invited responses from all mayors of cities with 75,000 or more residents; in total, 130 mayors across 38 states participated.

Leaders praise local provisions in Biden’s recovery plan

SmartCitiesDive, January, 19, 2021

Direct aid for city and state governments has been a source of contention as jurisdictions have seen their budgets decimated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Last year, USCM called for $250 billion in federal aid to support flexible emergency assistance for state and local governments, but no aid was forthcoming from Congress in its December relief package.

‘We have a lot of work to do’: US mayors say COVID-19 pandemic highlights opportunities for cities

RALEIGH (WTVD), January, 12, 2021

As COVID-19 continues to impact cities across America, Boston University surveyed more than 100 mayors to find out what the biggest impacts they face at the start of 2021. The 2020 Survey highlighted similar concerns shared across the country with economic impact, racial inequalities and long-term transformations to downtown cited as topping the list.

Cross Atlantic Responses to Covid: An interview with Menino Survey of Mayors

Quadrant-Smart, January, 11, 2021

After the release of the 2020 Menino Survey of Mayors, Quadrant Smart sits down with Katherine Levine Einstein, of Boston University’s Initiative on Cities, and one of the principal investigators of this survey. Associate Prof. Einstein explains the findings of the survey, how schools face the biggest impacts of Covid-19 through cuts and funding, and how transport faces a pivotal shift in the accessibility and necessity of travel.

America’s mayors paint a pessimistic picture for the post-pandemic future

Yahoo Finance, December 28, 2020

Mayors from across the U.S. are less than optimistic about what the future holds for their cities as the coronavirus pandemic rages across the country. The recent Boston University Initiative on Cities’ Menino Survey of Mayors surveyed 130 mayors between June and August 2020 about the coronavirus pandemic, its economic impact on their cities, and their outlook for both the short term and long term.

When you lie about pandemics and public health, people die

Poynter, December 16, 2020

The new Boston University Menino Survey of Mayors shows they have a lot on their minds thanks to the pandemic. They worry about the future of small businesses and budget cuts lurking for schools. Their biggest current worry has to do with evictions.

Inadequate COVID Stimulus Is Pushing Cities and States to Make Draconian Cuts

Truthout, December 15, 2020

For the last nine months, as the COVID crisis has deepened, cities and states have stared down a growing financial apocalypse. In the first bloom of the crisis, those cities and states that had managed to put aside extra dollars during nearly a decade of economic growth used up their hard-won rainy-day funds; then they began juggling numbers, using accounting tricks to lower current spending obligations without actually reducing jobs and services; and then, when they ran through their grab bag of tricks, they had to begin cutting services.

Republican mayors urge Congress to provide aid for local governments — but Mitch McConnell has dismissed such money as a ‘blue-state bailout’

Business Insider, December 15, 2020

Aid for state and local governments in the US has been framed as a “blue-state bailout” by some Republicans, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and President Donald Trump. That aid, in turn, has helped stall negotiations between Republicans and Democrats for any additional federal coronavirus relief funding.

US Mayors Paint Troubling Post-Pandemic Picture

Voice of America, December 9, 2020

America’s cities are in crisis as they cope with negative impacts of the pandemic on their most vulnerable residents, struggling local businesses and public schools, according to a new survey of the nation’s mayors.

US mayors predict permanent shifts in post-COVID cities

Cities Today, December 7, 2020

According to a new survey, 90 percent of US mayors believe the shift to remote working will persist even after a COVID-19 vaccine is available, and 60 percent expect a permanent reduction in in-person retail shopping. With this in mind, 60 percent agreed that downtown office buildings will become less desirable and 40 percent are expecting less mass transit use in the future, this year’s Menino Survey of Mayors from the Boston University Initiative on Cities finds.

US mayors expect ‘dramatic’ cuts to their public schools

The Hill, December 4, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic made national figures out of local mayors, who made highly politicized decisions about enforcing lockdowns and other prevention measures. But that was just the beginning, and now mayors are faced with another unpopular choice: budget cuts.

US mayors sound the alarm over impact of Covid-19 pandemic on their cities

SmartCitiesWorld, December 4, 2020

US mayors have painted a troubling picture for the future of their cities in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic, warning of major long-term impacts without a “strong and cohesive” federal response, according to a new study. The caution follows hard on the heels of a similar message from the National League of Cities that America’s cities, towns and villages would be “significantly impacted” if Congress failed to pass another stimulus package that included aid to cities.

Mayors: How COVID Changed the Future of Their Cities

Governing, December 4, 2020

Two out of three U.S. mayors say that in the long run, cities will be able provide “better opportunities to more people,” but this optimism is blunted by severe budget cuts and a belief that life is not likely to improve for those who have suffered the worst effects of the pandemic. The findings are part of the annual Menino Survey of 130 mayors in 38 states who responded to a series of questions about the impact of COVID-19 on the future of their cities.

In Blue States and Red, Pandemic Upends Public Services and Jobs

New York Times, December 4, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has inflicted an economic battering on state and local governments, shrinking tax receipts by hundreds of billions of dollars. Now devastating budget cuts loom, threatening to cripple public services and pare work forces far beyond the 1.3 million jobs lost in eight months.

US mayors expect ‘dramatic’ cuts with public schools hit the worst — and the US Senate’s stimulus package is unlikely to help

Business Insider, December 3, 2020

Nearly half of America’s mayors in a recent survey said they expected to see “dramatic” cuts to public-school budgets in the coming months, with an equal number attributing their cities’ economic struggles at least in part to an inadequate federal response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Unsanitized: Mayors Know COVID Has Permanently Changed Cities

The American Prospect, December 3, 2020

That’s what comes through in this survey of big-city mayors run out of Boston University. Nearly half of them predict “dramatic” cuts to public schools, along with 38 percent to parks and recreation and 35 percent to mass transit. More than half—around 60 percent—see a “permanent reduction” for in-person retail shopping and downtown office building capacity. A whopping 80 percent believe racial health disparities will grow.

NYC was COVID-19 epicenter, but few mayors sought help from Bill de Blasio, survey finds

Fast Company, December 3, 2020

A survey of mayors out of Boston University shows which city leaders were most contacted by their counterparts to coordinate responses to the pandemic.

Mayors Pessimistic About Cities’ Prospects for Post-Covid Rebound

Route Fifty, December 3, 2020

Concerns highlighted by the Menino Survey of Mayors include possible deep cuts to local education and the changing economic landscape for local businesses. A new survey finds U.S. mayors are pessimistic about the ability of their cities to economically recover from the coronavirus pandemic—expressing particular concern over anticipated education budget cuts and the closure of small businesses.

Mayors strikingly pessimistic about post-COVID cities: survey

Smart Cities Dive, December 3, 2020

Mayors nationwide are sounding the alarm about inevitable budget cuts forced by the COVID-19 pandemic, and are showing widespread pessimism about the long-term impacts of the crisis, according to the annual Menino Survey of Mayors. The survey collected responses from 130 U.S. mayors in cities with populations over 75,000.

Mayors pessimistic about coronavirus recovery: survey

The Hill, December 3, 2020

A new survey of America’s mayors found widespread pessimism surrounding the recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. The 2020 Menino Survey of Mayors found that over 80 percent of those surveyed said they expected racial health disparities to widen in the future as a result of the pandemic.

U.S. Mayors See Permanent Changes Even After Covid-19 Vaccine

Bloomberg, December 3, 2020

It will take years for U.S. cities to fully recover from Covid-19 and during that time “a lot of small businesses won’t survive.”

U.S. mayors ‘bleak’ about recovery from pandemic’s effects

Reuters, December 3, 2020

The nation’s mayors hold bleak outlooks about the future of U.S. cities after the coronavirus pandemic, a major survey showed on Thursday, worried that workers will avoid offices and public transit and neighborhoods will not recover for years to come.

Mayors worry about pandemic’s impact on schools, small businesses, BU survey finds

The Boston Globe, December 3, 2020

The nation’s big-city mayors worry about their residents’ ability to weather the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic and fear especially that public school budgets and small businesses won’t soon recover, according to a study from the Boston University Initiative on Cities.

Mayors fear long-lasting effects of COVID-19

Axios Cities, December 3, 2020

U.S. mayors tend to be an optimistic bunch, but a poll released Thursday finds them unusually pessimistic about prospects for post-pandemic recovery.

BU Initiative on Cities US Mayors Pessimistic about Post COVID Budget Cuts, Long Term Damage

BU Today, December 3, 2020

As the COVID-19 pandemic swept across the country last spring and summer, the mayors of American cities feared devastating cuts to school budgets and worried that the impact on minority residents and renters would be crippling. They wondered how long it would take for education, transportation, and arts and culture to return to the old normal. And many reached out to other mayors for advice and moral support.

Mayors: Water tops city infrastructure needs

Axios Cities, January 29, 2020

Water-related infrastructure topped the list of infrastructure priorities for mayors, according to the 2019 Menino Survey of Mayors released this month.

US mayors believe infrastructure should be focus of 2020 presidential campaign, survey finds

Transportation Today, January 29, 2020

Mayors nationwide believe infrastructure is the most important issue presidential candidates should be addressing, according to Boston University Initiative on Cities’ 2019 Menino Survey of Mayors.

U.S. Mayors Heat Up D.C. with Local Perspectives on ‘Hot’ Opportunity Zones

The National Law Review, January 27, 2020

The U.S. Mayors convened their 88th Washington, D.C. Winter Meeting and released the 2019 Menino Survey of Mayors, the sixth such survey, reflecting the views of 119 mayors of cities with populations at or above 75,000 residents. The 2019 survey was somewhat unique in that the mayors were surveyed about Opportunity Zones, a federal tax initiative created under the Tax Cut and Job Cuts Act to stimulate local economic growth and development.

National links: More bikes and affordable housing are a part of a bold proposal for Paris

Greater Greater Washington, January 24, 2020

The mayor of Paris offers an ambitious plan for the city. Why are so many luxury condos in New York City empty? A survey of US mayors shows the complexities of reducing car usage in cities.

Is Baton Rouge too car-oriented?

Greater Baton Rouge Business Report, January 23, 2020

Over 75% of mayors in major U.S. cities say their cities are “too oriented toward cars,” according to a recent survey of 119 mayors conducted by researchers at Boston University. In Baton Rouge, city officials are reluctant to give a clear ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to that question.

How better bus lanes can fix everyone’s commute

Curbed, January 23, 2020

It was supposed to lead to a “carpocolypse.” The 14th Street Busway, a long-delayed pilot program in New York City to expedite service by creating bus-only lanes on a major east-west street in the lower half of Manhattan, was predicted to be a disaster for drivers.

How do mayors view Opportunity Zones?

Smart Incentives, January 23, 2020

The 2019 Menino Survey of Mayors asked for mayors’ opinions on the federal Opportunity Zones program. The mixed findings reflect the national debate on whether opportunity zones are a good “plan to help distressed America” or “a windfall for the rich.”

6 takeaways from the 2019 Menino Survey of Mayors

SmartCitiesDive, January 22, 2020

Mayors sit at the helm of city growth and challenges, yet the past year proved momentous for progress in Vision Zero goals, confronting the damaging effects of climate change and gearing up for the future of work. The 2019 results of Boston University’s Initiative on Cities Menino Survey of Mayors reveal the priorities and challenges that 119 mayors across major U.S. cities have confronted (and are continuing to face), like affordable housing, car dependencies, flooding and more.

Bloomberg goes big on infrastructure

Politico, January 22, 2020

A week after putting out a clean transportation plan that would boost electric vehicles, the former New York mayor and presidential candidate is releasing an infrastructure plan.

Today’s Pickup: New Survey Highlights Optimism Among Shippers

Benzinga, January 21, 2020

Shippers are showing renewed optimism in the macro environment with rates improving across railroads and truckload, according to the results of the Freight Pulse 56 Shipper Survey from Morgan Stanley.

U.S. Mayors Want 2020 Presidential Election to Address Infrastructure

U.S. News & World Report, January 21, 2020

U.S. mayors want infrastructure to be addressed in the 2020 presidential election, believe their cities are too dependent on cars, and view a new federal low-income area investment program favorably, according to annual survey results released Tuesday.

U.S. Mayors Say Infrastructure Is a Priority. But What Kind?

City Lab, January 21, 2020

In 2014, Boston University’s Initiative on Cities asked a group of 70 mayors across the U.S. to name the most pressing issues in their cities. That year, the bipartisan group from places big and small largely agreed the answer was infrastructure. Last year, as part of their now-annual Menino Survey of Mayors, the university asked a bigger group of mayors a similar question: What issue related to cities did they hope would get talked about during the 2020 election cycle?

U.S. mayors like the idea of being less car-focused but hate the policies that could make it happen

Fast Company, January 21, 2020

While cities across Europe are banning cars and radically redesigning streets, in the U.S., cars still take up a lot of urban space. Most U.S. mayors seem to agree that cities here are too dependent on cars—and many also believe travel for pedestrians and cyclists is unsafe on their streets—yet a new survey finds that they don’t actually support the policy changes, like such as parking prices or reduced speed limits, that would decrease car usage and make streets safer.

Vast Majority of Mayors Believe Their Cities Are Too Car-Oriented, Survey Finds

Route Fifty, January 21, 2020

Mayors from around the U.S. in a new survey released on Tuesday raised concerns about pedestrian and cyclist safety and indicated that they believe their cities are too car centric. The 2019 Menino Survey of Mayors was spearheaded by researchers at Boston University and is based on interviews with 119 mayors conducted last summer.

Mayors Say Their Cities Are Unsafe for Pedestrians, Cyclists—but Cars Still Rule

BU Today, January 21, 2020

America’s mayors think their cities are “too oriented toward cars.” They fear for the safety of pedestrians and cyclists. They’re building bike lanes. They’re worried about vehicular greenhouse gas emissions. But lowering speed limits to protect the growing ranks of walkers and cyclists? Or discouraging drivers by making parking more expensive and harder to come by?

We can address the link between fiscal and physical health in cities

The Hill, March 20, 2019

In Trenton, N.J., local government is facing an acute fiscal challenge that is largely driven by the local economy. At just over $34,000, Trenton’s median household income is less than half of the county and state median.

New York’s Ejection of Amazon Is the Start of a Movement

CityLab, February 14, 2019

Amazon has pulled out of plans to build an office in Long Island City, Queens, the company announced Thursday. The decision comes after months of opposition from city council members, state legislators, and local activists who condemned the $3 billion in tax incentives the company would have received from New York.

New York’s rejection of Amazon could be a turning point for corporate welfare

Curbed, February 14, 2019

When Amazon announced the long-awaited “winners” of its search for a second headquarters last November, the swift and visceral backlash from residents and local officials of New York City seemed destined to fizzle with time, just like similar outrage every time a city gives out half a billion dollars to build a stadium or lure a manufacturing plant.

For president: Why not a mayor?

The Boston Globe, February 14, 2019

The burgeoning field of officially declared presidential candidates for 2020 includes five US senators, several members of Congress, a former cabinet secretary, two businessmen, a spiritual adviser to Oprah, and one mayor (Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Ind.). The track record of mayors as presidential candidates falls somewhere between grim and laughable.

Why Mayors Keep Trying to Woo Business With Tax Breaks

CityLab, February 7, 2019

We at CityLab have written quite a lot about Amazon’s HQ2 and the use (or abuse) of taxpayer-funded incentives to lure large corporations. The reality is that corporations make location decisions based on factors like the availability of talent, and then game the process to extract maximum incentives. Despite that, the ultimate HQ2 winners—New York and Virginia—offered more than $2 billion combined in various tax credits and incentives to attract Amazon.

From the Mayor: The state of Waltham in 2019

Wicked Local Waltham, February 1, 2019

Above Mayor Jeannette McCarthy’s desk hangs a picture of the earth from space. “The earth is to remind me that I’m a speck on the earth,” she said. Her life on earth has been devoted to Waltham, the city she grew up in, and one that she leads as mayor.

From the Mayor: The state of Waltham in 2019

Wicked Local Waltham, February 1, 2019

Above Mayor Jeannette McCarthy’s desk hangs a picture of the earth from space. “The earth is to remind me that I’m a speck on the earth,” she said. Her life on earth has been devoted to Waltham, the city she grew up in, and one that she leads as mayor.

Housing hypocrisy is alive and well in South Boston

The Boston Globe, January 31, 2019

Rarely has there been so much justifiable gnashing of teeth over the shortage of housing in the region – and the shortage of affordable housing in particular. A recent national survey of mayors done by Boston University confirms that lack of affordable housing is their number one concern.

Affordable housing a major issue in national survey of mayors

New Hampshire Business Review, January 30, 2019

An annual Boston University survey of mayors from across the country has found bipartisan agreement that affordable housing – or the lack thereof – is a nagging issue affecting their residents’ social mobility.

These 6 Marijuana Polls All Share 1 Thing in Common

The Motley Fool, January 24, 2019

Once considered taboo, marijuana is nothing of the sort any longer. The legalization of recreational cannabis in Canada last year legitimized the pot industry and rolled out the red carpet for Wall Street and long-term investors to place their bets.

From the editor: Survey of U.S. mayors finds affordable housing vexes cities nationwide

Columbus Business Report, January 24, 2019

Well, we’ve finally found something that Republicans and Democrats can agree on. According to an annual survey of U.S. mayors by Boston University, city leaders from both sides of the aisle cited the affordable housing crisis as a critical issue they face going into 2019.

Majority of nation’s mayors support legalizing pot: Survey

The Washington Times, January 22, 2019

A slight majority of the nation’s mayors support legalizing and regulating marijuana sales in their cities, a study conducted by researchers at Boston University revealed Tuesday. Led by the college’s Initiative on Cities, the 2018 Menino Survey of Mayors asked 110 sitting U.S. mayors from cities in 37 states whether they favored legalizing marijuana.

What Democratic and Republican Mayors Agree On

Route Fifty, January 22, 2019

The only issue that consistently unites Democratic and Republican mayors is unaffordable housing, which both sides agree is a significant barrier to residents’ social mobility, according to Boston University’s 2018 Menino Survey of Mayors.

Mayors Believe Tax Incentives Are Overused — By Other Mayors

Next City, January 22, 2019

Mayors think that economic development incentives are good policy, but most agree that other cities offer too many incentives, according to Boston University’s 2018 Menino Survey of Mayors.

Eight Big Questions US Mayors Faced in 2018

BU Today, January 22, 2019

For hundreds of mayors around the country, 2018 became the Year of Amazon. But for only two of them (the mayors of Arlington, Va., and New York City) did the obsession about landing one of the new headquarters for the online retail king prove worthwhile. For the others (Boston’s among them)? Not so muchThat was just one of the key observations and takeaways from the 2018 Menino Survey of Mayors conducted by Boston University’s Initiative on Cities.

Affordable housing, living wages top issues in annual survey of mayors

The Columbus Dispatch, January 22, 2019

As home values and rents continue climbing nationwide, affordable housing is the number-one concern for big city mayors — whether Republican or Democratic — and the cost of housing is the sole issue that many mayors from both parties consider a significant barrier to social mobility, according to a new study from the Boston University Initiative on Cities.

Annual BU survey of mayors finds affordable housing is top issue

The Boston Globe, January 22, 2019

As home values and rents continue climbing nationwide, affordable housing is the number-one concern for big city mayors — whether Republican or Democratic — and the cost of housing is the sole issue that many mayors from both parties consider a significant barrier to social mobility, according to a new study from the Boston University Initiative on Cities.

This week in Boston real estate: Opinions on multifamily housing, what $1 buys and more

Boston Agent Magazine, September 7, 2018

Nearly two-thirds of Boston residents oppose multifamily project housing, according to a new study conducted by Boston University’s Initiative on Cities. The study included 2,800 participants, gathering and tracking data from planning and zoning meetings from 97 municipalities in the Boston area over two years.

NIMBYs Dominate Local Zoning Meetings

City Lab, September 6, 2018

That’s according to a new study by Katherine Einstein, Maxwell Palmer, and David Glick, political scientists associated with Boston University’s Initiative on Cities. People who oppose creating more multifamily housing development tend to speak at public meetings much more often than those who support it. The study compiled unique data on the participants in planning and zoning meetings of 97 towns in the Boston metro area. It tracked some 2,800 citizen participants in meetings on issues of zoning and housing from 2015 to 2017.

Both liberals and conservatives are NIMBYs, especially if they own their home

Think Progress, August 21, 2018

The most vocal opposition to such changes are home-owning older men who have actively participated in local elections and lived in the community for a long time, according to one forthcoming study funded by Boston University’s Initiative on Cities. But they aren’t alone: the vast majority of people attending zoning meetings oppose development. And only 19.4 percent of Democrats and 12.8 percent of Republicans supported the projects at those meetings.

More evidence the Salt Lake area is becoming like the Bay Area

Desert News, July 12, 2018

It’s a somewhat familiar problem nationwide. A Menino Survey of 115 mayors by Boston University last year found 51 percent identifying rising housing costs as the main reason people choose to move from their cities. But 35 percent also said zoning and development issues are the biggest factors affecting their approval ratings.

One Year After Trump Left the Paris Agreement, Who’s Still In?

City Lab, June 1, 2018

Research indicates, however, that despite a small conservative showing in these sorts of public coalition groups, support for climate resilience policy is more bipartisan than it seems. According to an analysis by the Boston University Initiative on Cities, while Republican mayors “shy away from climate network memberships and their associated framing of the problem,” they do “advocate locally for policies that help advance climate goals for other reasons, such as fiscal responsibility and public health.” Open climate leadership by some states and cities could encourage quiet, policy-driven support from others.

Why Some Politicians Shun Promotions

Bostonia, June 26, 2018

Put off by gridlock and partisan knife fights in upper reaches of politics—both in Washington, D.C., and in state capitals—city executives appear to be happy homebodies. “The bulk of mayors in our survey certainly said, ‘We’re cool being mayor,’” says Katherine Levine Einstein, a College of Arts & Sciences assistant professor of political science, who conducted the research with Maxwell Palmer, also a CAS assistant professor of political science, and David Glick, a CAS associate professor of political science, with help from Robert Pressel (CAS’16, GRS’16)…

Here’s How City Networks Can Help American Cities Reduce Their Carbon Footprint

CityMetric, May 9, 2018

Over the last three years, US mayors have become increasingly convinced that cities should play a strong role in reducing the effects of climate change. Today, two thirds of mayors are willing to expend resources to take action on climate. If the political will exists, the question then becomes: who is offering a roadmap to get there – and what are the next steps?

To Close Gaps at the Federal Level, Cities Are Increasingly Turning to Networking

GovTech, May 8, 2018

From climate changes to smart cities, mayors and high-level staff are joining more networks to address pressing issues in their jurisdictions. A new report looks at how mayors and cities have tried to address concerns and fill federal gaps through new networks…

New Report On City-To-City Networks, From Boston University Initiative On Cities, Shines Spotlight On Mayoral Policy Activism Beyond City Limits

PR Newswire, April 23, 2018

Today the Boston University Initiative on Cities, with support from Citi Community Development and The Rockefeller Foundation, launched Cities Joining Ranks—Policy Networks on the Rise, a new report which details the activities, visibility, value, and membership of city-to-city policy networks, and provides the first evaluation of city peer groups based on joining behavior…

The Ground Game: Cities & Racial Equity

Medium, March 27, 2018

On Sunday March 11th, Initiative on Cities Executive Director Katharine Lusk took the stage at SXSW to lead a discussion on how mayors are advancing racial equity in America. Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, Leon Andrews from the National League of Cities, and Dr. Atyia Martin, former Chief of Boston’s Office of Resilience and Racial Equity, joined to discuss local powers, progress and stumbling blocks...

White Residents Have Better Access to City Services, Mayors Say in New Survey

Governing, March 11, 2018

Mayors recognize that their white residents have better access to a wide range of public services than their residents of color, according to a new survey. Most mayors said people of color experienced worse treatment by police and the courts and had worse access to education, housing and health care...

Let The Mayors Lead

City Lab, March 8, 2018

So far this year, state lawmakers have shown a growing focus on interfering in local government, rather than finding solutions for the problems Americans collectively face. It’s no wonder that a recent survey from Boston University found that both Republican and Democratic mayors were very concerned about state government preemption…

As the Trump Administration Retreats on Climate Change, US Cities are Moving Forward

Chicago Tribune, March 6, 2018

Despite almost universal scientific consensus that climate change poses a growing threat, President Donald Trump ‘s recent infrastructure plan makes no mention of the need to build resilience to rising global temperatures…

Why Federalism is Hard

Vox, February 27, 2018

The word federalism used to make liberals raise their eyebrows in suspicion and skepticism. States’ poorly funded welfare programs, paralyzing debt, and resistance to guidance from the federal government were enough reasons to make federalism, as principle of government, something from which progressives would keep their distance…

Density’s Next Frontier: The Suburbs

City Lab, January 31, 2018

America’s mayors named housing, and housing affordability, as the number-one problem facing their cities. This concern was not only voiced by mayors of expensive, coastal cities, but in diverse communities across the nation…

Dem and GOP Mayors Agree: States Must Stop Preempting Local Laws

Next City, January 24, 2018

In a year marked by fires, hurricanes, drastic temperatures and $306 billion in climate-related damages, two-thirds of U.S. mayors believe that cities should take action on climate change, even if their efforts will cost them…

Among U.S. Mayors, There’s Widespread Concern About Housing Costs, a New Survey Finds

WBUR, January 24, 2018

Mayors across the United States say that housing costs are the biggest reason that people are moving away from cities, according to a new survey released Tuesday…

Why are People Leaving Cities?

Newsweek, January 24, 2018

It’s certainly not just an issue in pricey Greater Boston. A new nationwide survey of mayors finds that half believe the cost of housing is among the top three reasons people move out of their cities…

Mayors Tackle Climate Change Issue

Albanian Times, January 24, 2018

Mayors tackle climate change issue as it is increasingly becoming a crucial factor so much that the advocate strategies that could be an impediment for the residents and may even harm the cities economically…

Will Cities Save Our Democracy?

Real Clear Politics, January 24, 2018

With dysfunction all too common in our national politics — marked by party-line votes, partisan rancor, and, of course, government shutdowns occurring with nauseating regularity — hope may lie closer to home…

Leaders of US Cities Worried About Lack of Affordable Housing

BU Today, January 24, 2018

If you want to get mayors of US cities talking, says BU political scientist David Glick, ask them about affordable housing. Republicans and Democrats alike, mayors of big coastal cities and medium-size Midwestern towns “are all worried about it,” says Glick, a researcher with the University’s Initiative on Cities…

Big City Mayors in U.S. Rank Climate Change Among Their Most Pressing Concerns

Renewable Energy Magazine, January 23, 2018

A growing number of mayors across the United States believe attenuating the effects of climate change is among their top priorities, but a deep partisan divide remains on the question of whether human activities worsen the problem, a new survey finds…

New Menino Survey of Mayors, from Boston University Initiative on Cities, Reveals Housing Affordability and Climate Change as Top Issues for Mayors

Business Wire, January 23, 2018

Mayors nationwide, from cities large and small, agree that housing availability and affordability are their most pressing concerns and the top reasons why people are moving away from their cities…

The Leading Challenge Many U.S. Mayors Say Their Cities are Facing

Route Fifty, January 23, 2018

Housing affordability and access is a top concern for mayors throughout the U.S., according to newly published survey results…

New Survey of Mayors Shows Most are Concerned About Lack of Affordable Housing

The Washington Post, January 23, 2018

More than half of the mayors who responded to the annual Menino Survey of Mayors said that high housing costs are the main reason that people are moving out of their cities, the leading cause above concerns about jobs, schools and public safety…

Survey: Mayors View Climate Change as Pressing Urban Issue

The Associated Press, January 23, 2018

U.S. mayors increasingly view climate change as a pressing urban issue, so much so that many advocate policies that could inconvenience residents or even hurt their cities financially…

BU Scientists Get $3 Million NSF Research Traineeship Grant

BU Today, December 20, 2017

Pamela Templer, a College of Arts & Sciences professor of biology, and a team of interdisciplinary researchers from CAS and the School of Public Health are aiming a broad-based new teaching program. The researchers have been awarded a $3 million, five-year National Science Foundation Research Traineeship (NRT) grant to prepare a new generation of interdisciplinary scientists to tackle urgent urban environmental problems through what is hoped will be a model graduate program for other universities…

Too Many in Greater L.A. Miss Out

Los Angeles Daily News, February 28, 2017

Thousands of Angelenos are in position to build a stronger financial future through one of the nation’s most successful — yet most severely underutilized — anti-poverty measures, the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). leaders across the country recognize the dire need to lift families out of poverty. According to the just-released findings of the Menino Survey of Mayors, America’s mayors from cities big and small say poverty is their most pressing economic concern….

It’s the Poverty, Stupid, Not Trump’s Imagined Carnage

The American Prospect, January 27, 2017

Most municipal leaders understand that crime reduction hinges on addressing multiple underlying economic factors like poverty, which requires dollars and innovative strategies, not beatdowns. Chicago officials want more federal funding for education, economic development, and gun control, not the National Guard. Indeed, poverty is the top economic issue for both Democratic and Republican mayors in the United States, as we know from the Boston University Initiative on Cities, which tallied the responses from 102 mayors in cities of 75,000 or more in 41 states for its recent 2016 Menino Survey of Mayors….

IOC 2016 Survey of Mayors Finds Poverty a Top Issue

BU Today, January 25, 2017

The nation’s mayors say that poverty is the most pressing economic issue facing their communities—more so than either the shrinking middle class or income inequality. That finding is the key takeaway from the 2016 Menino Survey of Mayors, released earlier this month by Boston University’s Initiative on Cities. For this year’s study, 102 sitting mayors from 41 states were interviewed last summer as one of the most contentious presidential campaigns in decades played out—a campaign that contained inflammatory rhetoric over issues like immigration and inclusion….

Poverty, Economic Equality Are Big Concerns for U.S. Mayors

Boston Globe, January 10, 2017

Mayors across the United States are increasingly focused on poverty and economic inequality and less preoccupied with city finances, according to Boston University’s annual survey of more than 100 sitting mayors. The findings of the survey suggest that although municipal budgets have stabilized since the financial crash of 2008, mayors fear that the rising cost of urban life threatens to make cities affordable to only the very rich and very poor….

“Menino Survey of Mayors” Across Nation Reveals Poverty Among Consistent Concerns

WBUR, January 10, 2017

Poverty, lack of inclusion for all residents and fear among immigrants are some of the major concerns reported by mayors across party lines in cities throughout the country, according to the “Menino Survey of Mayors.” The late Boston Mayor Thomas Menino started the initiative when he began teaching at Boston University a few years ago. Later Tuesday morning, a briefing on the new results will be held in New York City. Graham Wilson, director of the Boston University Initiative on Cities, joined Morning Edition….

Majority of U.S. Mayors Say Poverty is Their Top Concern

Next City, January 10, 2017

While the growing divide between “coastal elites” and Middle America has been a hot topic in recent months, many mayors from red and blue states have strikingly similar policy priorities, according to a survey released Tuesday by the Boston University Initiative on Cities. The 2016 Menino Survey of Mayors, now in its third year (see the 2015 results here and the 2014 results here), checks in with over 100 mayors in 41 states about everything from their own career ambitions to tackling poverty and federal agencies. While last year’s survey focused on topics like infrastructure, finance and housing, this year’s was more heavily skewed toward what the researchers called “people priorities” — things like poverty and immigration….

New Menino Survey of Mayors Reveals Poverty as Top Issue for Cities across the Country

BusinessWire, January 10, 2017

Three central issues of the 2016 presidential election – income inequality, the shrinking middle class and immigration – are also of deep concern to mayors of cities throughout the country. These findings are part of the 2016 Menino Survey of Mayors released today by the Boston University Initiatives on Cities, with the support of Citi, which details the most pressing needs and policy priorities of America’s mayors.The 2016 Menino Survey of Mayors provides important and timely insights into some of the largest and most complex issues facing the nation’s mayors at a time of significant transition….

NLC President Matt Zone Creates Economic Mobility and Opportunity Task Force

PR Newswire, November 28, 2016

The National League of Cities‘ (NLC) new president, Matt Zone, councilmember from Cleveland, Ohio, launched a new NLC Task Force on Economic Mobility and Opportunity at the City Summit in Pittsburgh. The task force will identify recommendations for cities to address economic barriers that keep many families from sharing in our country’s prosperity. Findings from the 2015 Menino Survey of Mayors conducted by Boston University’s Initiative on Cities confirm that growing inequality and persistent poverty continue to concern local leaders….

Thinking about Smart Cities

BU Today, November 10, 2016

The smart cities movement has brought together government officials with university researchers as well as people from industry, foundations, and other nonprofits. As part of an NSF-funded project called SCOPE (Smart-city Cloud-based Open Platform and Ecosystem), BU researchers from the Hariri Institute, CAS, the College of Engineering, and the Initiative on Cities, are testing a wide range of possibilities, from smart parking apps to using traffic data to reduce carbon emissions….

Racism: what BU and Boston can do about it

BU Today, November 9, 2016

Drs. Karilyn Crockett and Atyia Martin, the City of Boston’s Director of Economic Policy and Research and the Chief Resilience Officer respectively, addressed students and staff at the third forum in a series called Reducing Disparities: Advancing Toward Racial Equity, sponsored by BU’s Initiative on Cities. They gathered to talk about what Boston is doing—and what BU can do—to encourage equality. Among the themes of the forum, moderated by Dean Kenneth Elmore, was that Boston, where most residents are people of color, needs institutions like BU to address inequality.

On range of issues, mayors are taking the initiative

Boston Globe, June 21, 2016

In a hyperpartisan era of government gridlock, mayors are increasingly tackling society’s most vexing problems, from mass transit to immigration, income inequality to economic development. The Boston University Initiative on Cities 2015 Menino Survey of Mayors found that mayors “feel that they are tasked with some of the most thorny policy issues facing America without the accompanying aid from higher levels of government that their predecessors might have expected….”

Calculating gender pay equity

Boston University College of Arts & Sciences Magazine, Spring 2016

Just before he left office in 2014, late Boston mayor Thomas M. Menino (Hon.’01) set the city an ambitious goal: be the first in America to bridge the wage gap. After leaving office, Menino joined BU to cofound the Initiative on Cities (IOC), a research center designed to connect academics like Azer Bestavros with policymakers. Bestavros told Menino there might be an alternative solution to the data problem: computer software that would allow the companies to play a part in revealing Boston’s wage gap, without any paychecks leaving their servers….

How America’s mayors are taking the lead on income inequality

Governing, March 24, 2016

Compared to areas like crime or local tax rates, mayors believe income inequality is an area over which they have neither a great deal of control nor a great deal of accountability to constituents. While that might lead us to expect mayors to do less, the survey shows the opposite to be true: Many of America’s mayors are aggressively pursuing a wide variety of policies and tactics that target household financial insecurity and income inequality.

BU has a mayor: Nashville’s Karl Dean- music city’s former two-term leader in residence at IOC

BU Today, March 2, 2016

The inaugural Mayor-in-Residence at BU’s Initiative on Cities (IOC), cofounded by Boston’s late, beloved five-term mayor, Thomas Menino (Hon.’01), Dean is also a CAS visiting professor of political science for the spring 2016 semester. He was elected Nashville mayor in 2007, easily won reelection in 2011, and served until this past September, when a term limit forced him to step down.

Researchers tackle BPS school assignment system equity as many clamor for answers

Bay State Banner, February 19, 2016

Two years in, the impact of Boston Public School’s relatively-new school assignment system has yet to be fully assessed, and the Boston Compact is pushing for significant modifications. Harvard’s Nancy Hill, BPS’ Kim Rice and Harvard’s Kelley Fong were among panelists speaking at the Boston University Initiative on Cities headquarters....

Cities build up innovation to tackle breakdown in urban infrastructure

GOVERNING, February 17, 2016

In the recently released Menino Survey of Mayors, local leaders noted they are receiving little funding and support from the federal government, and are increasingly taking the challenge into their own hands. That’s why Living Cities and the Citi Foundation have designed the third cohort of City Accelerator — an initiative that is helping 11 select U.S. cities foster innovation and collaboration among urban leaders — to test, innovate and codify new ways of building, repairing and maintaining much-needed infrastructure....

U.S. mayors name their biggest infrastructure wish

Next City, January 26, 2016

For the second year running, infrastructure topped the list of mayoral challenges. More than half of mayors responded that underinvestment in infrastructure is the number one state or national issue creating the largest problem for their cities....

Initiative on Cities 2015 Survey: what US mayors want

BU Today, January 25, 2016

To mayoral priorities include funding for aging infrastructure, bike accessibility, police reforms....

IOC released national survey of mayors, welcomed former mayor on campus

The Daily Free Press, January 25, 2016

The Boston University Initiative on Cities released the 2015 Menino Survey of Mayors during the United States Conference of Mayors 84th Winter Meeting Wednesday. IOC also welcomed to campus the first Mayor in Residence former Nashville Mayor Karl Dean Tuesday.

At mayors conference, the spirit of Menino

The Boston Globe, January 21, 2016

The spirit of the late Mayor Thomas M. Menino made an appearance this week in Washington, D.C., at the Winter Meeting of the US Conference of Mayors.

The conference released the “Menino Survey of Mayors” detailing the most pressing needs and policy priorities of mayors across the country. The survey was performed in partnership with The Boston University Initiative on Cities, which Menino co-founded after leaving office in 2014….

American mayors say infrastructure is most urgent priority

Cities Today, January 21, 2016

Mayors have identified investing in ageing infrastructure as the most pressing policy priority for cities according to findings released in the 2015 Menino Survey of Mayors….

In Survey, mayors say they worry about aging infrastructure

Associated Press, January 20, 2016

Mayors across the U.S. say they worry about their cities’ aging infrastructure and they’d like more state and federal support, according to a survey released Wednesday….

Summit explores ways to improve urban mobility

The Daily Free Press, December 8, 2015

The Boston University Initiative on Cities hosted a summit Monday to address ways that various technologies, policies and low-cost design interventions could improve transportation in Boston…

Lessons From a Former Mayor in One Accessible Collection

Next City, November 10, 2015

During two decades as mayor of Boston, Thomas Menino obviously learned a few things about the job he held. Insiders in state politics and government dubbed him the “urban mechanic,” …

BU Chosen to Host Menino’s Archives

Daily Free Press, October 28, 2015

Former Boston Mayor Thomas Menino’s family has chosen the Boston University Howard Gotlieb Archival Research Center to organize and house the official Thomas Menino Archive….

BU Hopes to Bring Tom Menino ‘Back to Life’

The Boston Globe, October 27, 2015

Nearly a year after the city’s longest-serving mayor died on Oct. 30, 2014, his legacy is being preserved and presented to the public in a collection curated by the Gotlieb Center, which hosts collections on historical figures and famous artists….

Karl Dean Featured in Boston Globe as Mass Transit Advocate

The Boston Globe, October 10, 2015

Karl Dean, a Democrat in his second term as this city’s mayor, had a few minutes to tell President Obama about his dream: building a “trackless trolley” line that would connect Nashville’s gentrifying east side with its ritzy west….

HUBWeek Panel Discusses Closing the Gender Wage Gap

The Boston University News Service, October 15, 2015

IOC Executive Director Katharine Lusk joined City Councillor At-Large Michelle Wu, Boston’s Office of Women’s Advancement Executive Director Megan Costello, and Director and Public Policy Professor Iris Bohnet of the Women and Public Policy Program at the Kennedy School to discuss concrete efforts to eliminate the gender wage gap in Boston….

Karl Dean to Join Boston University Faculty, Author Book

The Tennessean, August 14, 2015

Karl Dean’s post-mayoral schedule has gotten a lot busier, with plans to help lead an urban affairs initiative at Boston University, teach there and co-author a book that chronicles Nashville’s recent growth….

Initiative on Cities Seminar Looks in Boston Arts, Culture

Daily Free Press, April 8, 2015

Arts experts from Boston University joined Rebecca Ostriker from The Boston Globe to speak on a panel Tuesday about urban culture and development for the Initiative on Cities’ Urban Seminar Series “The Cultural City,” the final presentation of the 2014-15 academic year. The panelists talked about Boston’s unique culture and challenges the city faces to become more cultural…

Initiative on Cities panel emphasizes interaction in city

Daily Free Press, March 4, 2015

Leaders of the Boston University community spoke about the benefits and challenges of practice-based teaching and student interaction in Boston for the Initiative on Cities’ Urban Seminar Series title “Teaching the City.”…

Initiative on Cities seminar addresses urban policing, practices

Daily Free Press, February 24, 2015

With a critical public eye on police departments following the summer’s occurrences of police-civilian violence in Ferguson, Missouri and Staten Island, New York, Boston University’s Initiative on Cities held an Urban Seminar Series…

The Power and Perspectives of Mayors: Data From a Survey of More Than 70 U.S. Officials 

The Journalist’s Resource, January 26, 2015

In recent years, many city mayors have increasingly stepped into the wider policy-making space, coordinating actions and working toward common goals, even as the U.S. Congress have struggled to legislate and govern in a complex and changing world. To better understand urban politics and policy-making processes, Katherine Levine Einstein and David M. Glick of Boston University analyzed interviews with more than 70 mayors of a representative sample of cities across the United States…

How Coastal Cities are Preparing and Adapting to Sea Level Rise

WBUR, December 14, 2014

WBUR’s Bob Oakes moderates a panel discussion from the IOC’s Sea Level Rise and the Future of Coastal Cities City Leadership Summit, featuring urban leaders from Boston, MA, Elizabeth, NJ, and Melbourne, Australia…

From Boston to Melbourne, Cities Will Continue to Lead on Climate Change Resilience

Next City, November 17, 2014

When it comes to adapting to the effects of climate change, it seems that Michael Bloomberg’s favorite adage holds true: Cities act, nations talk…

Is Somerville Really the “Next Cambridge?”, November 4, 2014

For locals whose ideal Saturday involves re-reading “Infinite Jest,” listening to alt-J, and sipping an Americano out of a delightfully mismatched mug, a decision must be made: Cambridge or Somerville?…

As Asian Cities Grow, So Do Public Health Concerns

City Lab, October 21, 2014

All around the world, rural migrants are flocking to cities in search of a better life. But it turns out that a move to the big city can bring out the worst in people…

Boston-area Communities Vie to be the Next Somerville

The Boston Globe, October 17, 2014

When Ed Greable takes buyers house shopping in Medford, the broker hits one selling point…

The Most Influential Cities

American City & County, October 13, 2014

When it comes to policy issues, mayors from across the country look primarily to three particular cities for inspiration, according to a Boston University Initiative on Cities study..

Survey Illuminates American Mayors’ Priorities

Planetizen, October 9, 2014

A new study conducted by former Boston Mayor Tom Menino and the Initiative on Cities at Boston University surveyed 70 mayors on their challenges, policy agendas, and relationships…

Boston Is One of the Most Influential Cities in the U.S., According to Mayors

Boston Magazine, October 9, 2014

Who do mayors look to for inspiration on how to serve their own constituents? Why, their fellow mayors of course. And according to the results of a survey conducted by BU’s Initiative on Cities, Boston is one of the most influential cities in the country…

What Keeps U.S. Mayors Awake at Night?

Next City, October 8, 2014

While we often get snapshots into how certain U.S. mayors feel about specific issues (like transportation or stadium subsidies or “poor doors”), we rarely get an integrated overview of the way our cities’ executive branches, on the whole, prioritize policies based on their political environs…

Denver’s Nation’s Fourth-Most Influential City Say Mayors

Denver Post October 7, 2014

American mayors think Denver is the nation’s fourth-most influential city when it comes to policy ideas, according to a Boston University study…

The Most Influential Cities in the Country, According to Mayors

Washington Post October 7, 2014

When asked what cities they looked to for policy ideas, U.S. mayors mentioned New York, Boston, and Austin more than any other cities, a Boston University Initiative on Cities survey found…

Patrick, Menino, Other Leaders Reflect on Lessons Learned from the Boston Marathon Bombing

NECN March 24, 2014

Boston University’s Initiative on Cities conference is taking an in-depth look at the Boston Marathon bombing, providing other cities with useful crisis management information…

Lessons Learned From the Boston Marathon Bombing

WGBH News March 24, 2014

A day-long symposium on the lessons learned from the Boston Marathon bombing wrapped at Boston University on Monday – attended by law enforcement officials, politicians, academicians, media and victims of the tragedy…

Davis Stands by Releasing Photos of Boston Marathon Bombing Suspects

WBUR March 24, 2014

Former Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis says when he saw the photos of Boston Marathon bombing suspects Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, he wanted his officers and the public to be alert…

Tom Menino’s Initiative on Cities

WBUR “Radio Boston” March 18, 2014

Menino is setting up the Initiative on Cities with Graham Wilson, Chairman of the Political Science Department at B.U…