Spring 2013 - 62980 - PA391 - Public Financial Management
This course is an introduction to the theory and practice of public financial management at all levels of government. Its objective is to develop student capabilities in the analysis of financial operations and the management of public sector financial resources The course will cover the principles of finance, economics, accounting and fiscal administration. A major part of the course will be devoted to understanding the basic financial reports of governments – their budgets and their annual reports. Other topics include taxes and other revenues, bonds and other forms of debt, investments, capital budgeting, performance evaluation and auditing.
The course format will primarily be lectures, but extensive student interaction is expected. It will require homework assignments prior to each class meeting and a semester project. There will be a mid-semester exam and final.
Inasmuch as a substantial portion of the course focuses on financial statements, students will be at a decided advantage of they come to the course with understanding of fundamental concepts of accounting. To this end, if students do not have a background in accounting (e.g. have never had an accounting course) they are strongly advised to take a computer-based course in the subject. To assess whether they need the course, the instructor has arranged an on-line assessment test. Details about both the course and the test will be available from either the graduate advisor or the instructor.