MOre to Explore: Finance

ANALYZING SUBNATIONAL GOVERNANCE OF RENEWABLE ENERGY POLICIES IN MEXICO

Client
WORLD BANK
Faculty
Paul Smoke
Team
Rudina Breçani, Shannon Foley, Kaitlyn Holman, Maria Ponce Sevilla

The World Bank Group’s Governance Global Practice supports client countries by helping them build capable, efficient, transparent, inclusive, and accountable institutions with the aim of eradicating extreme poverty and boosting shared prosperity. To combat the climate crisis, many countries have committed to reducing carbon emissions and reliance on fossil fuels. However, meeting these goals and sustaining climate action requires changes to intergovernmental relations and institutional frameworks that can be difficult to achieve. The World Bank enlisted a Capstone team to provide a comparative analysis of renewable energy policies and implementation in three states in Mexico: Jalisco, Tabasco, and Yucatan. The team conducted a comprehensive literature review and interviewed key stakeholders ranging from government officials and policymakers to nonprofits and academic institutions. Based on its findings, the team produced a final report with an analysis of current climate policy instruments and accountability measures in these three Mexican states, highlighting the most effective renewable energy policies and providing state-, federal-, and international-level recommendations.

Capstone Year

IMPROVING IMPACT ASSESSMENT OF THE SUMMER READING PROGRAM

Client
QUEENS PUBLIC LIBRARY
Faculty
Sonia Balaram
Team
Gabriela Gonzalez, Hillary Le, Concetta Modica

The Queens Public Library (QPL) is one of the largest public libraries in the US and serves the most diverse borough in New York City. QPL strives to create a more vibrant, informed, cohesive, and empowered society by focusing on the values of inclusion, access, integrity, and respect. QPL engaged a Capstone team to strengthen its assessment of its summer reading program. The team conducted a broad analysis of literacy programs at other libraries and educational institutions, including summer reading programs for school-aged children. The team’s final deliverables include a logic model and a preliminary assessment model, as well as next steps for implementing a full assessment of QPL’s summer reading program.

Areas Of Impact
Capstone Year

IDENTIFYING SAVINGS AND CREDIT-BUILDING PRODUCTS TO ACHIEVE FINANCIAL STABILITY

Client
LOCAL INITIATIVES SUPPORT CORPORATION
Faculty
John Ceffalio
Team
Justin Houlahan, Jiajun Jiang, Kevin Newton, Prem Persaud

Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to community development that works to bridge the gap between government, foundations, and for-profit companies, and community residents and local institutions. LISC engaged a Capstone team to assist with its financial stability and economic development initiatives that provide low- and moderate-income populations with essential tools and skills for job seeking and money management. The team initiated this process with a market scan to identify existing financial products that target these populations. The team developed a comprehensive product guide—to be used throughout LISC’s network of financial and career coaching service centers—that lists optimal savings and credit-building products as a roadmap to financial well-being for low- and moderate-income individuals.

Capstone Year

FINANCIAL ANALYSIS OF TOTAL JOINT REPLACEMENT TECHNOLOGY

Client
NYU LANGONE ORTHOPEDIC HOSPITAL
Faculty
Rona Affoumado
Team
Izabela Averyt, Olivia Gibson, Albertina Qelaj, Shefali Sood

Surgical technologies at the NYU Langone Orthopedic Hospital continue to evolve and expand, allowing surgeons to have better accuracy and spend less time in the operating room. Robotic-assisted total joint replacement surgery has shown additional benefits, such as faster recovery times and improved patient outcomes and satisfaction. Long-term, these technologies can be cost-saving for a hospital. The Capstone team was tasked with providing a financial analysis of the implementation of robotic technology for total joint and spine surgeries at three client sites: NYU Manhattan, NYU Brooklyn, and NYU Long Island. The team evaluated operating room volume data, reviewed current and upcoming orthopedic technologies, conducted a SWOT analysis, and researched market trends. The team’s final report outlines recommendations to guide technological implementation at NYU Langone hospitals.

Capstone Year

ANALYZING THE DEVOLVING WATER SECTOR IN KENYA

Client
OVERSEAS DEVELOPMENT INSTITUTE
Faculty
Paul Smoke
Team
Daniel Brenner, Karen Milanya, Joselyn Molina, Mihika Shah

The Overseas Development Institute (ODI) is Britain’s leading independent think tank on international development and humanitarian issues. The ODI Development and Public Finance group has been working with NYU to develop an analytical framework for understanding the impact of intergovernmental finance arrangements on public service delivery in developing nations. ODI tasked a Capstone team with testing this framework in the devolving water sector of Kenya. The team collected data and conducted field interviews with key Kenyan stakeholders, including subnational and nongovernmental officials in four counties: Nyeri, Kirinyaga, Kiambu, and Murang’a. With its findings, the team prepared a final report with recommendations for ODI to develop their efforts to reform intergovernmental financial arrangements and improve the delivery of water and other public services.

Capstone Year

DESIGNING AN INNOVATION HUB IN ETHEKWINI

Client
WORLD BANK
Faculty
Paul Smoke
Team
Bojan Francuz, Akosua Serwaa Frimpong, Mahima Sharda, Nursultan Suleimenov

The World Bank Group’s Finance, Competitiveness & Innovation Global Practice recognizes the essential role that local governments play in building inclusive, healthy, resilient, and sustainable cities. The World Bank enlisted a Capstone team to assist in the conceptualization and design of an Innovation Hub in eThekwini (Durban), South Africa. This Hub will be a physical space for businesses and partners in the local innovation ecosystem to collaborate on private-sector efforts that address economic opportunities and social challenges. The team consulted with local stakeholders and researched municipalities with relevant comparable characteristics that have created and successfully managed innovation hubs. The team presented the client with high-level concept notes based on their findings, outlining potential vision, goals, key objectives, and partnerships, along with recommendations for sustainable management and operation of the Hub.

Capstone Year

EVALUATING THE EFFECT OF PARTICIPATORY BUDGETING ON REDISTRIBUTION OF PUBLIC FUNDS

Client
PARTICIPATORY BUDGETING IN NEW YORK CITY
Faculty
Ali Ahmed & Kristina Arakelyan
Team
Emily Brennan, Lesley Orellana, Victor Porcelli, Sophie Sharps

Participatory budgeting is a process in which community members decide how a portion of public funds should be spent. Participatory budgeting in New York City (PBNYC) began with four City Council districts in 2011 and has expanded to 31 of the 51 districts in 2019. One of the goals of PBNYC is to make public spending more equitable. Using publicly available data, the team conducted a difference-in-difference analysis to determine whether PBNYC results in a reallocation of capital project funds within districts and the extent to which these effects are moderated by neighborhood income level, gentrification, and political engagement. The team’s findings provide insight into whether PBNYC actually increases resources where most needed and are particularly relevant for policymakers and other stakeholders planning for PBNYC implementation citywide.

Capstone Year

LEGISLATIVE AND PROCUREMENT ANALYSIS OF ECONOMIC IMPACT MITIGATION PROGRAMS

Client
GUIDEHOUSE
Faculty
Michael Dardia
Team
Afzal Dar, Jiaqiang He, Laina Michel, Nancy Yang

Guidehouse is a public-sector advisory firm that performs loan servicing, technology modernization, and financial services for the US Small Business Administration’s loan programs. Guidehouse enlisted a Capstone team to analyze the legislative and procurement aspects of three major economic relief programs implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic: the Paycheck Protection Program, the State Small Business Credit Initiative, and the New York State Emergency Rental Assistance Program. The team developed a comprehensive research methodology that comprised sourcing and analyzing public-sector data on the programs, reviewing research articles and academic journals, using data analysis to develop recommendations, and conducting interviews with experts identified by the client. The team delivered a white paper and infographic suggesting improvements in the implementation of economic assistance programs during unforeseen events.

Capstone Year

EVALUATING AND IMPROVING THE DIABETES SCREENING INITIATIVE

Client
NYU LANGONE DEPARTMENT OF EMERGENCY MEDICINE
Faculty
Rain Henderson
Team
Gabriella Boulton, Arshdeep Dhanoa, Adeevah Goldstein, Nikhil Taurani

NYU Langone has launched an initiative to screen Emergency Department patients for prediabetes and diabetes. Patients who meet the screening criteria are given a blood test, and any patient who has elevated A1C levels is urged to seek follow-up primary care. This is a critical point for newly diagnosed patients, and NYU Langone is exploring ways to streamline patient education in order to improve patient compliance. The team was tasked with developing a comprehensive educational toolkit for care providers to use in conjunction with existing resources. The team conducted a literature review on best practices for diabetes education and performed a gap analysis using stakeholder interviews, evaluating current diabetes screening initiatives and identifying gaps in current workflow processes. Based on its findings, the team proposed budget-neutral enhancements for the client, including recommendations for improved workflow processes and an educational toolkit to guide future patient care.

Capstone Year

TRANSIT-ORIENTED DEVELOPMENT INDEX

Client
SUFFOLK COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND PLANNING
Faculty
Michael Keane
Team
Capstone Team: Jane Bartman, Seth Kerr, Sarah Saltz, Arvind Sindhwani

The office of Downtown Revitalization and Transit-Oriented Development at the Suffolk County Department of Economic Development and Planning (SCEDP) promotes the development, growth, and retention of industry clusters that facilitate job opportunities, private capital investment, and tourism. To support the County’s efforts to retain and attract highly-skilled workers and young professionals, SCEDP works with municipalities to run technical and financing programs to promote transit-oriented development (TOD) around Long Island Railroad stations. The Capstone team worked with SCEDP to develop a plan for a Suffolk County TOD Index, an analytical tool to assess the location-based potential for TOD development and compare TOD suitability across locations. To develop the index, the team identified the key drivers of TOD success in Suffolk County by analyzing large amounts of public data and existing TODs through site visits, desktop research, and stakeholder interviews. Based on index-indicated TOD readiness, the team conducted several site-level analyses and provided high-level recommendations for future TODs.

Capstone Year

ASSESSING THE MUNICIPAL FINANCE ECOSYSTEM IN TANZANIA

Client
UNITED NATIONS CAPITAL DEVELOPMENT FUND
Faculty
Paul Smoke
Team
Isabelle Hazel, Lydia Stockslader, Yelzhas Umirzakov, Saumya Wali, Boyoung Yun

The United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) Local Development Finance team supports local governments and economies in public service delivery in the world’s least developed countries. UNCDF has been asked by the government of Tanzania to assist in the development of a municipal bond market. UNCDF engaged a Capstone team to assess the current spectrum of subnational development finance options and the larger intergovernmental and subnational fiscal ecosystem in Tanzania. The team conducted primary and secondary research to identify possible market opportunities for municipal finance in the country. The team synthesized its findings into a final report, providing recommendations for intergovernmental and subnational fiscal and governance reforms that could enhance the creditworthiness of subnational governments in Tanzania.

Capstone Year