Integrating Planning and Finance

Our Work

US Local Government Finance Tools

Local governments in the United States are responsible for paying for and providing certain services and infrastructure, such as public education, affordable housing, road maintenance, and water infrastructure. Our fact sheet identifies local government revenue sources and highlights tools local governments can use to plan for, implement, and maintain these services and infrastructure projects.

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Foundations of Local Government Finance in the United States

This self-paced online course provides an overview of how local governments in the US raise and spend money. It illuminates the often-misunderstood system by which communities pay for public services and infrastructure—from schools to clean water to sidewalks—that are foundational to a high quality of life.

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Innovations in Urban Planning Education

We invest in innovative ways to make learning concepts related to public finance and urban economics more accessible and interesting. One example of this is a multiday organized game called GIROS. Taking its name from the Spanish for both “transaction” and “turning around,” which captures the notion of the interdependencies of land markets, GIROS has been played well over 150 times and inspired spinoffs in most of Latin America and in the Netherlands, Taiwan, Ghana, Kenya, the Philippines, and other countries. Participants range from urban planning students to high-level public officials.

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Fiscally Standardized Cities Database

The FiSC database makes it possible to compare local government finances for 200 of the largest US cities across more than 120 categories, including revenues, expenditures, debt, and assets, going back to 1977. The estimates take into account that some city governments provide all local government services, while others share the responsibility with overlying counties, school districts, and special purpose districts.

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Infrastructure Economics and Policy
Edited by José A. Gómez-Ibáñez and Zhi Liu



Working Paper Cover
China’s Policy to Limit Use of Public-Private Partnerships by Municipalities to Finance Capital Improvements
Robert Bland, Jingran Sun, and Yu Shi

Documentos de trabajo

Gobierno local

Reinventing Development Regulations
Jonathan Barnett and Brian W. Blaesser