Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Public Administration and Policy

Content Description

1 online resource (vii, 142 pages) : illustrations.

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Gang Chen

Committee Members

Luis F Luna-Reyes, Lucy C Sorensen


Financial condition, Fiscal stress, Fiscal transparency, Performance information, Transparency in government, Intergovernmental fiscal relations, Budget, Government accountability

Subject Categories

Public Administration


Financial information disclosure affects decision makings of important stakeholders of financial management in governments. Financial information disclosure can operate as an accountability tool by reducing? the information asymmetry between governments and citizens. Using data from U.S. state and local governments, this dissertation examines how financial information disclosure affects decisions made by local government managers, citizens, and elected officials. The first essay examines whether setting financial performance targets by state governments improves local governments’ financial performance. Using the framework developed from the performance management literature, the study tests the effectiveness of New York State’s fiscal stress monitoring system. The second essay investigates how citizens’ voting behavior changes when financial performance information becomes more prominent. Focusing on New York's case, where school districts hold budget elections every year, the essay investigates whether budget election’s turnout rate and disapproval rate increase among the districts where fiscal stress information has become salient. The third essay explores whether fiscal transparency mitigates the political budget cycle (PBC) in the U.S. state gubernatorial elections. Building on the theory of PBC, the study tests whether the electoral cycle of aggregated and disaggregated spending varies by the level of a state’s fiscal transparency. To do so, I develop a fiscal transparency index representing three aspects of transparency: 1) budget documents and financial reports following best practices, 2) effective oversight, and 3) public availability of financial information.