The FSU Local Governance Research Laboratory is housed in the Askew School of Public Administration and Policy School. Founded in 2000, the Local Governance Lab is a team of scholars pursing research that seeks to improve our understanding of local governments and governance institutions in metropolitan regions. The Lab’s four ongoing research programs – Institutional Collective Action; The Political Market; Transaction Cost Federalism, and Policy Tool Bundling – offer theoretical frameworks to investigate issues related to economic development, land use, energy & sustainability, service delivery, infrastructure and finance. The work in each of these research areas began with informal working groups made up of faculty, students, post-docs and visiting scholars. Although the issues studied are diverse, they share a common focus on the role of formal and informal institutions in shaping local governance process, policy, and performance. Students seeking a Ph.D. in Public Administration and seeking to join the Local Governance Lab should have a strong academic record and research interests falling within one or more of Lab's programs. Visiting faculty seeking to affiliate with the Lab need to be engaged in research projects that will contribute to these programs.
Under the direction of Rick Feiock, the lab has generated over $2 million in external research grants including seven National Science Foundation research grants as well as awards from the Lincoln Institute for Land Policy, Aspen Institute, IBM Center for the Business of Government, and the Fulbright Scholar Program. In addition to the research programs, the Lab supports symposia and a distinguished lecture series. The lab also hosts the Integrated City Sustainability Database (ICSD) and other urban research resources.