Publications / Transportation & Infrastructure


Policy Report

By / 10.31.2017

Throughout the 2016 presidential campaign, Donald Trump promised a massive infrastructure program financed primarily by the private sector. Trump’s 2018 budget proposed leveraging $200 billion in direct federal spending into $1 trillion in infrastructure investment through private sector incentives. However, President Trump recently retreated from this campaign pledge that private sector funding would be a […]

Policy Brief

By and / 5.11.2016

The U.S. Supreme Court has put President Obama’s Clean Power Plan on hold while lower courts review challenges to the regulation. The ruling is a setback to Obama’s hopes of bypassing a hostile Republican majority in Congress and using his executive authority to require electric utilities to make big reductions in carbon emissions. At last […]

Political Memo

By / 3.15.2016

As Americans choose a new president in 2016, populist anger dominates the campaign. To hear Donald Trump or Senator Bernie Sanders tell it, America is either a global doormat or a sham democracy controlled by the “one percent.” These dark narratives are caricatures, but they do stem from a real dilemma: America is stuck in […]

Policy Brief

By and / 12.10.2015

Economists and policymakers are always lauding innovation. In its purest form, innovation is like a free lunch: it boosts growth and incomes, creates good jobs, and opens up new possibilities for social reform and social mobility. Today, innovation is needed more than ever. Productivity growth has been slowing in recent years. The 10-year growth rate […]

Policy Brief

By and / 7.6.2015

We review recent trends in federal infrastructure spending and the policy case for dynamic scoring of revenue and spending legislation. The use of dynamic scoring depends upon the magnitudes of near‐term impacts on economy‐wide spending and the long‐run impacts on productivity. We conclude that federal infrastructure investment should be dynamically scored. A simple example suggests […]

Policy Brief

By / 3.30.2015

With last year’s landmark U.S.-China agreement on climate change, the Obama administration has raised the bar for America when it comes to reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHG). That deal set new targets for reducing emissions by 26—28 percent (from 2005) levels by 2025, well above the previous pledge of 17 percent by 2020. Given implacable […]

Policy Brief

By / 1.16.2015

The decision by Senate and House Republicans to make approval of the Keystone XL Pipeline their first legislative priority has a decidedly retro feel. Much has changed since the Keystone project was first proposed in 2008. Most important is America’s shale oil and gas boom, which has contributed to a sharp drop in global oil […]

Policy Report

By and / 9.10.2014

In this era of globalization, goods, services, money, people, and data all cross national borders with ease. Indeed, connectedness to the rest of the world is now essential for the data-driven economy we find ourselves in to thrive. It follows that our tax, trade, immigration, and regulatory policies must be oriented to encourage that connectedness. […]

Policy Memo

By / 7.30.2014

Is Australia ready for the digital economy? This is obviously a subject of great debate, intertwined with decisions about investments in the National Broadband Network and public concerns about data privacy. It is clear that some parts of the Australian digital economy, notably mobile communications, are quite vibrant. Two recent reports from the Australian Communications […]

Policy Memo

By / 5.29.2014

Nowhere is America’s chronic underinvestment in infrastructure more visible than in the nation’s transportation systems, which present a sorry picture of crumbling bridges, congested freeways, shabby airports, crammed transit and slow freight and passenger trains. We strive to be a first-class economy, but we cannot achieve that status with second-rate infrastructure. To put America back […]