Bloomberg on the importance of cities as labs


The best urban laboratories are cities themselves, says former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg. In a wide-ranging interview, Bloomberg emphasizes the importance of knowledge sharing among cities about crime, pollution control and energy efficiency and other issues.

“Finding solutions to these problems in one city will enable us to test them in other cities that experience similar problems,” he tells The European’s Max Tholl. The freshest ideas don’t always originate in the West, either, says Bloomberg. He agrees with Tholl that some of the best ideas, such as bike share programs, germinated in the Global South.

Compared to legislators, Bloomberg says the accomplishments of mayors are easy to gauge. “People can walk out the door and see what the mayors did or did not do,” he tells the publication. You pick up the garbage or you don’t,” Bloomberg says, adding, “Somebody’s on the breadline or they have a job.”

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