From City Hall to overseas capitals, understanding public finance and budgeting is essential to provide the support to transform ideas into reality. In the Public Financial Administration concentration, you'll learn the theory and practice of raising public revenue, allocating resources through the budgeting process, and managing public assets and other fiscal resources. Just part of the reason U.S. News & World Report ranked us #1 in this area.
Public Financial Administration
Upper-level work is hands-on
The applied and experiential nature of the advanced courses in this concentration will prepare you well for a variety of positions in government finance and budgeting, management, and applied program and policy analysis.
A broad base, plus depth and detail
You'll begin by mastering the fundamentals reflected in our MPA program's core competencies. These five courses (15 credit hours) will give you well-developed analytical skills and a broad understanding of policy issues and government processes. In addition to these highly transferable core skills, the Public Financial Administration concentration includes four other required courses including the following three seminars:
- Revenue Theory and Administration (F 609)
- Government Budget and Program Analysis (F 610)
- Public Capital and Debt Theory (F 667)
For the final required course, you will work with your advisor to choose one of the two following courses:
- Benefit-Cost Analysis of Public and Environmental Policies (P 541)
- Governmental Financial Accounting and Reporting (F 542)
Personalize your program
The remainder of the coursework comes in a wide range of elective courses. These will allow you to tailor your Public Financial Administration program to your own specific interests. Working with your advisor, you'll be able to select from many elective options, including the following:
- Data Analysis and Modeling for Public Affairs (P 507)
- Public Management Information Systems (I 516)
- Public Program Evaluation (P 562)
Your MPA program offers far more than traditional lectures and lessons. You'll also get the benefit of experiential learning—typically through an approved internship. What's more, your concentration's coursework will culminate in a project-oriented course—a capstone—that integrates and allows you to apply the knowledge you gained throughout the program.
Combining your Public Financial Administration concentration with another MPA concentration—such as International Development, Policy Analysis, or Environmental Policy and Natural Resource Management—can offer you unique advantages in pursuing a particular career. As they help you design your program, our faculty will work to accommodate your specialized professional interests.