The first week of May, the Los Angeles Mayor’s Office welcomed as its new director of innovation delivery Amanda Daflos, who joins the city as part of $2.55 million three-year Bloomberg grant designed to bring private-sector consultants into city government. Daflos will work with her team to help the city develop innovations centered around priorities identified by Mayor Eric Garcetti.
The Bloomberg program, announced in December, includes 12 U.S. cities that want to improve neighborhoods and residents’ quality of life, and use data to address urban challenges. In Los Angeles, Daflos said her first task will be to improve poor neighborhoods, working with a team of four to six consultants.
“There are a lot of opportunities in Los Angeles to look at how we map neighborhoods to a deeper level of complexity so we can learn a little more about each neighborhood and the demographics in the neighborhood, what that tipping point is and what that right balance is between health factors, quality-of-life factors, back-to-basics factors, those kinds of things,” Daflos said.
Technology may or may not be part of the solution, but the team’s goal is to search for innovations that improve life in the city, she said, tackling new challenges as they’re put forth by the mayor.
"I'm thrilled that L.A. will join the Bloomberg Philanthropies Innovation Teams program," Garcetti said in a statement. "This data-driven, results-oriented initiative will bolster my administration's work to solve the most pressing problems facing our neighborhoods and will help communities across L.A. become more prosperous and better places to live."
Daflos joins the city after nine years as a senior manager with Deloitte Consulting, where she helped manage large government projects related to child welfare, child support, water management, Department of Defense and grants management. Before joining Deloitte, Daflos also worked as director of programs for an international nonprofit organization and co-founded the Nepal Trek and Trail Run, an annual event that benefits organizations in Nepal. Daflos also supports the Los Angeles Honorary Consul General to Nepal.
The Bloomberg Foundation reports that its program is intended to implement “new data-driven approaches to neighborhood revitalization that minimizes displacement and maximizes the economic and social benefits flowing to low-income residents of Great Street and Promise Zone neighborhoods — including opportunities for starting or expanding local businesses and generating new and better jobs for local residents.”