Elizabeth Jane Beckett-Camarata, Ph.D.

Associate Teaching Professor of Public Administration, Public Affairs
Public Administration MPA Graduate Faculty
Public Administration PhD Graduate Faculty
Office Phone: +1 717 948 6206
Office Location: Olmsted Building, W131
Mailing Address:

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Dr. Beckett-Camarata teaches in the Penn State Harrisburg master’s program in public administration. Her finance teaching interests include government revenue systems, public financial management, budgeting, capital budgeting, infrastructure finance, cost accounting, and governmental and managerial accounting. Dr. Beckett-Camarata was a recipient of a Lilly Foundation Scholar Award for the advancement of teaching excellence. She has taught university courses in Russia and was a Fulbright Scholar at Kharhiv National University in Kharkiv, Ukraine where she taught economic development finance. While at the University of North Wales, Bangor, Wales, she researched the impact of the EU on bank regulation.

Dr. Beckett-Camarata has authored many articles and book chapters. Her work has been published in the Public Productivity and Management Review, Journal of Budgeting, Accounting and Financial Management, Municipal Finance Journal, International Journal of Public Administration, American Review of Public Administration, Journal of Business Research, Handbook of Public Sector Economics and Handbook of Globalization, and Governance and Public Administration. She was the recipient of the Baruch College, CUNY distinguished Municipal Leadership and Finance Award which funded her 2005 summer research on changes in New York City’s pension fund assets during fiscal crisis.

As a former chief financial officer in the Commonwealth of Virginia, she managed operating and capital budgets, financial accounting and reporting, and revenue forecasting. She was instrumental in integrating the strategic plan into the budget and accounting system, and establishing and integrating financial performance measures.

She serves as an expert reviewer for the Government Finance Officers Association and as an expert witness for the U.S. Federal Court System in government budgeting. She also serves on the editorial board of several academic journals.

Dr. Beckett-Camarata is active in professional organizations including the American Society for Public Administration, where she has served as co-chair of the Finance Committee, Executive Council, and Audit Committee;  Association for Budgeting and Financial Management, where she has served on the Board of Directors, the Program Committee and the Curro Award Committee; National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration, where she has served on site visit teams and on the Commission on Peer Review and Accreditation (COPRA); the Government Finance Officers Association; and numerous other organizations.

Dr. Beckett-Camarata received a Ph.D. in public policy and administration from Virginia Commonwealth University (1998); master of public administration from the American University (1989); and bachelor of science degree in finance from Syracuse University (1983).


Research Interests
Fiscal stress
Contingent liabilities
Municipal operating budget volatility and debt management
Municipal bankruptcy
State and local budgeting
Type and timeliness of financial reporting
State and local performance accounting and reporting
Revenue volatility
Infrastructure finance
Intergovernmental transfers