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Jeffrey A. Hughes

Teaching Associate Professor and Director, Environmental Finance Center

Jeff Hughes joined the School of Government in 2002. He has more than 25 years of experience assisting communities in addressing finance and policy challenges related to the provision of environmental services and programs. Hughes is the author of numerous reports, guides, and articles on environmental finance and environmental policy analysis subjects. He works with a range of state and national organizations that focus on utility and environmental issues. He is an active member of Council of Infrastructure Finance Authorities (CIFA) and the American Water Works Association (AWWA). Hughes is the director of the Environmental Finance Center at the School of Government. His research and teaching interests include service pricing, economic regulation, and public finance. He was named Albert and Gladys Hall Coates Distinguished Term Lecturer for 2012–2014. Prior to joining the university, Hughes worked as a finance specialist for RTI International where he managed utility finance and governance projects throughout Central Europe and Africa including a yearlong position as an infrastructure finance advisor to the Polish government. Hughes also worked briefly as a utility director for a small rural community in North Carolina. He earned a master’s degree in environmental engineering from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a bachelor’s degree in engineering from Duke University.


Selected Publications 

Institutional Models for Sharing Water Resource Protection Costs among Multiple Partners. Environmental Finance Center Report. May 2014.

Defining a Resilient Business Model for Water Utilities. Jeff Hughes, Peiffer Brandt, Mary Tiger, Shadi Eskaf, and Stacey Berahzer. Water Research Foundation Report #4366. January 2014.

Assessing Water System Revenue Risk: Considerations for Market Analysts. Jeff Hughes and Sharlene Leurig. A Ceres report. August 2013.

An Assessment of PACE Local Government Financing Issues in Three States. Adam Parker and Jeff Hughes. Environmental Finance Center Report. October 2012.

Mining Water Billing Data to Inform Policy and Communication Strategies. Christine E. Boyle, Shadi Eskaf, Mary Wyatt Tiger, and Jeff Hughes. Journal AWWA, Volume 103, Issue 11, pages 45-58. November 2011.

Additional Publications 

Financing Sustainable Energy Projects at Small Liberal Arts Colleges. Jeff Hughes, Jen Weiss. Guide for the Jessie Ball Dupont Fund. February 2014.

Designing Water Rate Structures for Conservation and Revenue StabilityJeff Hughes, Mary Tiger, Shadi Eskaf. Report for the Sierra Club Lonestar Chapter and the Texas Living Waters Project. February 2014.

Water Fund Finance and Governance MechanismsJeff HughesImplementation report for The Nature Conservancy. January 2014

Steering Innovation in Water Utility Finance and Management: A Water Research Foundation Leadership Forum.Jeff Hughes and Mary TigerWater Research Foundation Report #4506. October 2013.

Communicating Revenuesheds: A User Guide. Jeff Hughes, Glenn Barnes, Mary Tiger, Christine Boyle, Lauren Patterson, Jordan McMillian, Jon BreeceEnvironmental Finance Center Report. August 2012.

Evolving Local Government Roles in Community Energy ManagementJeff Hughes and Erin RiggsEnvironmental Finance Center Report. May 2012.

A Question of Boundaries: The Importance of “Revenuesheds” for Watershed Protection. Patterson, L. A., Hughes, J., Barnes, G. and Berahzer, S. I. Journal of the American Water Resources Association. doi: 10.1111/j.1752-1688.2012.00655.x. April 2012.

Implications of Residential Irrigation Metering for Customers' Expenditures and Demand. Mary Wyatt Tiger, Shadi Eskaf, and Jeff Hughes. Journal AWWA, Volume 103, Issue 12, pages 30-41. December 2011.

How to Look Forward Without Looking Back: Innovative Approaches to Forecasting Green Finance Program Demand. Christine Boyle, Michael Chasnow, Jeff HughesJournal of Sustainable Real Estate. December 2011.

Electricity Rates in North Carolina: Residential Electricity Rates and Pricing in North Carolina. Casey Wichman, Jeff Hughes. Environmental Finance Center Report. September 2011.

Rates and Revenues Water Utility Leadership Forum Report.  Rates and Revenues: Water Utility Leadership Forum on Challenges of Meeting Revenue Gap. Mary Tiger, Jeff Hughes and Scott Haskins. Water Research Foundation Report #4405. August 2011.

Benchmarking Utilities' Rates and Finances for Decision and Policy Makers. Stacey Berahzer, Shadi Eskaf, Jeff Hughes. International Water Association's 4th Leading Edge Conference on Strategic Asset Management, held September 27-30, 2011, in Mülheim an der Ruhr, Germany. June 2011

Options for Raising Capital for Residential Energy Loan Programs. Jeff Hughes. US DOE and Oak ridge National Laboratory. April 2011.

Chapter 6. Partners and Stakeholders: Roles and Potential Impact, Finance Guide for Residential and Commercial Building Improvements. Jeff Hughes. US DOE Clean Energy Finance Guide, 3rd Edition. December 2010.

Borrowing for the Big Stuff: Types of Water Debt in North Carolina. Jeff Hughes, Sean Hughes. North Carolina Currents, a magazine of NC AWWA. p. 40-41. Spring 2010.

American Recovery and Reinvestment Act: Opening the Door to New Subsidization Policies. Jeff Hughes. Rural Matters, a magazine of the Rural Community Assistance Partnership. p. 9-12. January/February 2010.

Refining Residential: Using Customer Consumption Records to Tell a Story of Utility Management. Mary Tiger, Shadi Eskaf, Jeff Hughes. Environmental Finance Center White Paper. December 2009.

Surviving or Thriving in Economic Recession: Strategies of Water Utility Leaders. Jeff Hughes. Water Research Foundation  Report. Fall 2009.

Utility Rate Setting for Cost Recovery and Conservation in North Carolina. Jeff Hughes. Environmental Finance Center White Paper. June 2009.

Cost Plus: Estimating Real Determinants of Water and Sewer Bills. Jeff Hughes, Shadi Eskaf, Rich ThorstenPublic Works Mgmt & Policy, Volume 13.3, on pages 224-238. December 2008.

An Overview of Water and Sewer Rates, Rate Structures and Rate Setting Practices in North Carolina. Shadi Eskaf, Jeff Hughes, Mary Tiger. Environmental Finance Center White Paper. April 2007.

Drinking Water and Wastewater Infrastructure in Appalachia: An Analysis of Capital Funding and Funding Gaps.Jeff Hughes, Richard Whisnant, Lynn Weller, Shadi Eskaf, Matthew Richardson, Scott Morrissey, Ben Altz-Stamm. Appalachian Regional Commission. Report submitted and presented to the ARC, EPA, and funding program managers. July 2005.

The Painful Art of Setting Water and Sewer Rates. Jeff Hughes. Popular Government, Volume 70, No. 3, Spring/Summer 2005.

Paying Upfront for the Disposal of Special Wastes. Popular Government. February 2003.

Curriculum vitae (pdf, 135.01 KB)
Fields of Expertise
Capital Planning, Budgeting, and Finance
Environmental Finance Center
Environmental Protection
Finance (County and Municipal)
Interlocal Government Relations (Environmental Public Enterprises) Natural Resources Management
Public Enterprise Organization and Financing
Public Utilities
Solid Waste Management (Non-Legal)
Water and Sewerage Services (Non-Legal)
Water Resources
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