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For many policymakers, troves of data can seem impenetrable. It can be hard to parse the gathered information, and even harder to apply that information to policy problems. Some cities, however, are getting better at using data to fix problems and improve the lives of people in their communities.

A conference in Los Angeles last week -- the Summit on Government Performance and Innovation -- brought together more than 650 city government leaders and employees to discuss the promise and pitfalls of using data in developing policy, delivering services, and monitoring governments' performance in doing so in a fair and equitable way.

The conference was also the backdrop for recognizing high perfoming cities in this year's Equipt to Innovate survey, a key component of which is using data to reach larger policy goals.

On this episode of "Go Public," Governing's Zach Patton and J.B. Wogan talk about where data is being used well, where it shows promise in our civic life, and the privacy risks attendent in its use.

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