Great Problems, Great Minds Seminar Series: ‘Innovative Infrastructure Finance in the U.S. State and Local Governments’

Join the Social Sciences Colloquium at the Department of Social Sciences for this Great Problems, Great Minds seminar series event featuring guest speaker Can Chen, an associate professor in the Department of Public Management and Policy at the Andrew Young School of Policy Studies at Georgia State University. This seminar will take place on Wednesday, April 3, from 5–6:15 p.m. over Zoom.


Chen founded and leads the Infrastructure Finance & Policy Lab. His main research area is infrastructure finance, governance, and policy. Dr. Chen has published a book titled Innovative Infrastructure Finance: A Guide for State and Local Governments (Palgrave Macmillan, 2022) and more than 35 peer-reviewed journal articles in top journals, such as The American Review of Public Administration, Journal of Comparative Policy Analysis: Research and Practice, and Public Management Review. He served as the chair of the American Society of Public Administration Section on Transportation Policy and Administration and the co-chair of the Chinese Policy Studies Group. He is the Associate Editor of the Chinese Public Administration Review and the Symposium Editor for Public Finance and Management. He received research grant funding from the Volcker Alliance Research Grant of the American Political Science Association, World Bank, Governmental Accounting Standards Board, International City/County Management Association and Government Finance Officers Association, Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, Open Government Partnership, and Korea Development Institute. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Political Science/International Economics from Harbin Engineering University, a master’s degree in Public Administration from Xiamen University, and a Ph.D. degree in Public Administration from the University of Nebraska at Omaha.


The Federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act of 2021 represents the largest public investment in infrastructure since the Interstate Highway system. While state and local governments face a serious infrastructure deficit, there are growing innovations in state and local infrastructure financing. This talk will discuss innovative ways of funding and financing state and local infrastructure and offer case studies and policy suggestions for infrastructure policymakers and practitioners who are considering their adoption and implementation of innovative infrastructure financing.

The event is part of the Social Sciences Colloquium of the Great Problems, Great Minds seminar series which explores the major problems facing humanity as we move into the heart of the 21st century. To see the full schedule and videos from previous events, visit the seminar series page.

For more information, contact Associate Professor of Social Sciences Hao Huang at