Identifying, planning, and executing research to aid with discussion of fiscal and governance issues

The purpose of the Government Finance Research Center is to shape and inform public policy and scholarly discourse on government and public finance by identifying, planning and executing research, providing periodic reports and informed analyses, and offering venues at which to convene national and local discussion on fiscal and governmental issues.

The unique design of the GFRC is its emphasis on the local level with connections to the state level. Focusing on state and local government finances allows a bottom-up understanding of the possibilities and constraints on government actions that most closely connect to the daily lives of citizens and residents. The approach also draws on CUPPA’s long-standing partnership and collaboration with the National League of Cities, the Brookings Institution, the Civic Federation, the Government Finance Officers Association and other civic and professional associations, both regionally and nationally. Through this intertwining of bottom-up research and policy leadership, the GFRC will work to be the nationally recognized center of informed fiscal policy and scholarly discourse, thereby shaping the debate on state, municipal and regional governance and public finance.

The objectives of the GFRC will include the identification, planning and execution of research that will be the focus of regular and periodic reports, informed analysis, and the most inclusive and up- to-date forums and workshops for discussion of fiscal and governance issues.


Meet the Government Finance Research Center Team

Deborah A. Carroll

Deborah A. Carroll, Director

Deborah A. Carroll joined UIC in 2021 as director of the GFRC and as an associate professor in the Department of Public Administration in the College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs. Dr. Carroll’s research focuses on financial management and fiscal policy issues of state and local governments, particularly related to taxation, revenue diversification, revenue stability, and urban economic development, as well as on the interconnectedness of the government and nonprofit sectors and the implications for tax policy, tax burden, and public service provision. On these topics, Dr. Carroll has produced more than 50 publications and 15 grant-funded white papers and technical reports. She has been invited to share her research and expertise with academic and practitioner audiences across the U.S. and in several other counties. Dr. Carroll also serves as editor in chief of the Journal of Public and Nonprofit Affairs and previously worked as a budget and policy analyst for the City of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Read more about Deborah Carroll.

Amanda Kass, Associate Director

Amanda Kass, Associate Director

As associate director of GFRC, Amanda Kass designs, conducts, and manages research in the GFRC’s priority areas. Amanda also works with the faculty and external advisory panels to advance the GFRC’s goals and disseminate its research. Amanda has previously worked at the Center for Tax and Budget Accountability and the University of Chicago’s Center for Municipal Finance. Her research focuses on state and local finance, with sub-specialties in pensions, housing, and fiscal analysis. She has a Ph.D. in Urban Planning and Policy, and her dissertation examines investor activity in the residential housing market in Illinois after the 2007-2009 recession. Read more about Amanda Kass.

Sam Carlson

Sam Carlson, Research Assistant

Sam Carlson is a graduate student in UIC CUPPA’s Master in Urban Planning and Policy program. He is interested in housing, transportation, the built environment, and economic policy to create more financially sustainable cities. Sam started at the GFRC in Summer 2021 and supports the team with research, writing, and website management.

Jason Michnick

Jason Michnick, Research Assistant

Jason Michnick is a Ph.D. student of Public Administration at the University of Illinois at Chicago with professional experience in local economic development and nonprofit management. His research interests are in the intersection of economic development and environmental governance, especially around the role that public finance plays in collaborative networks and promoting sustainable development.

Katherine Barrett and Richard Greene

Barrett and Greene, Senior Advisors

Katherine Barrett and Richard Greene started Barrett and Greene Inc. more than 25 years ago and specialize in researching, writing, analyzing, speaking about and consulting about city, county and state government. They have demonstrated expertise in government management generally, tax systems, state budgeting, health management and policy, pensions, human resources, infrastructure, contracting and notably, performance measurement. Read more about Katherine Barrett and Richard Greene.

The Government Finance Research Center at the University of Illinois at Chicago

412 S. Peoria St., 115 CUPPA Hall, Chicago, Illinois 60607