Understanding and explaining the role of government is increasingly important. In the aftermath of the Great Recession, state and local governments need to reconsider what the business of governing is, and how we raise enough money to provide the services we need to build our future. This will require more transparency and discussion about what taxes buy and how we spend public funds. Policymakers at all levels need to think about these questions and how to cooperate. Our role is to help them make these decisions and explain the interactions between policy choices.
Kim Rueben is the Sol Price fellow and director of the State and Local Finance Initiative at the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center. Rueben is an expert on state and local public finance and the economics of education. Her work examines issues of state and local public finance and focuses on state budget and tax issues, intergovernmental relations, fiscal institutions, and the economics of education, including federal and state financing of both K–12 and postsecondary education and how decisions affect different individuals across states.
In addition to her position at the Urban Institute, Rueben is an adjunct fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC), serves on the board of the National Tax Association, the Washington, DC, Revenue Estimation Advisory Group, and as an advisor to Let’s Get Set, a purpose-driven fintech start-up. She works closely with state officials and has served on state tax advisory boards including in California and Washington, DC, and has testified before congressional and state legislative committees. She was a member of the National Academy of Sciences Panel that examined The Economic and Fiscal Consequences of Immigration and was on the executive board of the American Education Finance Association.
Before joining Urban, Rueben was a research fellow at the PPIC.
Rueben received a BS in applied math-economics from Brown University, an MS in economics from the London School of Economics, and a PhD in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.