Innovation of the Month


November 2018: St. Paul, Minn., Modernizes Stormwater Infrastructure

In collaboration with the University of Minnesota, the city of St. Paul is rethinking its approach to stormwater management through the use of green infrastructure and public-private partnerships.

Holy Fire

October 2018: Rural Wi-Fi Project Improves Wildfire Monitoring in Southern California

Originally intended to extend Internet access to far-flung areas, a collaboration between UC San Diego and San Diego County has been used to monitor and respond to several recent wildfires.

City of Austin Cameras

September 2018: Analytics Tool Helps Improve Traffic Planning in Austin

The city, in partnership with the University of Texas at Austin, is using video analytics to assess the city’s traffic and road usage patterns to gather better transportation data.


August 2018: Research Predicts Adoption Rates of Connected Autonomous Vehicles

In partnership with the city of Memphis, the FedEx Institute of Technology at the University of Memphis has developed a method for determining the potential of connected autonomous vehicle adoption.


July 2018: App Aims to Improve Access to Family Services in Chicago

NowPow, an app developed in partnership with Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago, is being utilized by researchers to assess the use of technology to improve the children and family services system.

UPenn Shutterstock

June 2018: University Students Create Spatial Analysis Tools to Help Cities Do More with Data

Graduate students from the University of Pennsylvania’s Master of Urban Spatial Analytics Practicum are working with city officials in Philadelphia, Providence, R.I., and Minneapolis to develop data science tools to improve safety, health and quality of life for residents.


May 2018: Data Analytics Helps Boston Schools Better Serve Students

Boston Public Schools have partnered with the Boston Area Research Initiative to create an Opportunity Index, which captures metrics about students that typical education statistics might miss.

April Innovation of the Month: Portland and Portland State Air Quality Pilot

April 2018: Air Quality Sensor Pilot Offers Lessons for Other IoT Installations

Portland, Ore., and Portland State University partner on sensors to improve air quality monitoring and delve into how other cities and municipalities can explore their own sensor projects.


March 2018: Universities Partner to Foster IoT Development in Cleveland

With the Internet of Things Collaborative, Case Western Reserve and Cleveland State universities work together to use their resources to drive innovation in the region.

Ohio State Capitol Building in Downtown Columbus Ohio during Springtime

Feb 2018: Ohio State University, Partners Develop ‘Smart Paint’ to Help the Visually Impaired Navigate Cities

The latest installment of MetroLab’s Innovation of the Month series highlights how a team at Ohio State University, along with the city of Columbus and private companies, is using smart, connected tech to help the blind and visually impaired.

Do you know of an interesting project that involves local government and university partners? Fill out our nomination form to help inform our selection process for our Innovation of the Month Award by nominating a team (or yourself) for the honor.

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