In the last two decades, governments have undergone important transformations in the constant challenge to compete, adapt and innovate in a realm of global economic and financial integration. Focusing on the element of innovation, particular autonomy is being given to debt and asset management agencies within the state, which increasingly operate as private actors. They engage in hedging risks, but they also seek returns. It is something more symbiotic happening within the public realm, linking governments' roles as both supply and demand for financial assets and innovation. There is a reconfiguration of public financial goals, which is strategic, sophisticated and proactive, rather than purely regulatory. One important implication has to do with financial complexity and state behavior. Another implication involves the contours of a new relationship with risk between the public and private sectors. The state is hardly a new actor, but its role is constantly reconfigured according to its intrinsic heterogeneity of tasks, tools and responsibilities.