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Project

Central and Local Government

Unit(s) of assessment: Business and Management Studies

School: Nottingham Business School

Overview

The Central and Local Government team led by Martin Jones has diverse interests and investigations.

Since the economic recession, and the election of the coalition government the team have been undertaking a series of projects assessing the financial and organisational resilience of local government nationally and internationally, both as a response to the current era of austerity and in the post-recession long term.

There are currently two inter-related work streams investigating central and local government issues, and the team are developing an impact case study relating to Public Assurance and Value for Money for the 2021 Research Excellence Framework.

Work stream 1

International comparisons of local authority financial and organisational resilience.

This group of projects investigates the financial and organisational resilience in local government through a number of national and international comparisons and case studies. The international work is facilitated by membership of the Accounting and Finance Special Interest Group of the International Research Society for Public Management. The projects have been supported by CIMA, the ACCA and by Cipfa. The work of this team overlaps with the work of the Accounting and Finance Research Group in the Business School and some colleagues are members of both groups.

Work stream 2

Public assurance, financial sustainability and performance management regimes for public services.

Between 2001 and 2010, a centralized system of performance management and strategic intervention for local government was developed in England which has been replaced by a self-regulated peer review system from 2010. Following the publication of a number of articles and reports in 2015 the team were approached to help with a pre-general election briefing for the National Audit Office. This resulted in a report on the public assurance and value for money risks across the services provided by local authorities, the police, health, social care and fire and rescue services. In turn this has led to a series of contributions to a number of national studies including those on Fire and Rescue Services; Ambulance Services; the Single Departmental Spending Plan system and HMT Spending Reviews. An impact case study based on accountability transparency and public assurance has developed around this work and the some of the projects in workstream 1.

Journal Articles

Barbera, C., Jones, M., Korac, S., Saliterer, I. and Steccolini, I., 2019. Local government strategies in the face of shocks and crises: the role of anticipatory capacities and financial vulnerability. International Review of Administrative Sciences.

Eckersley, P. and Ferry, L., 2019. Public service outsourcing: the implications of 'known unknowns' and 'unknown unknowns' for accountability and policymaking. Public Money & Management. ISSN 0954-0962

Eckersley, P. and Tobin, P., 2019. The impact of austerity on policy capacity in local government. Policy & Politics, 47 (3), pp. 455-472. ISSN 0305-5736

Ferry, L. and Eckersley, P., 2019. Budgeting and governing for deficit reduction in the UK public sector: act four - risk management arrangements. Public Money & Management. ISSN 0954-0962

Eckersley, P., 2018. Who shapes local climate policy? Unpicking governance arrangements in English and German cities. Environmental Politics, 27 (1), pp. 139-160. ISSN 0964-4016

Eckersley, P., England, K. and Ferry, L., 2018. Sustainable development in cities: collaborating to improve urban climate resilience and develop the business case for adaptation. Public Money & Management, 38 (5), pp. 335-344. ISSN 0954-0962

Ferry, L. and Eckersley, P., 2018. Hybridizing the institutional logics of performance improvement and budgetary stewardship in English and Welsh local government. Public Policy and Administration. ISSN 0952-0767

Ferry, L. and Eckersley, P., 2018. Debate: Brexit and local government in England - the challenges ahead. Public Money & Management, 38 (3), pp. 163-166. ISSN 0954-0962

Barbera, C., Jones, M., Korac, S., Saliterer, I. and Steccolini, I., 2017. Governmental financial resilience under austerity in Austria, England and Italy: how do local governments cope with financial shocks? Public Administration, 95 (3), pp. 670-697.

Eckersley, P., 2017. A new framework for understanding subnational policy-making and local choice. Policy Studies, 38 (1), pp. 76-90. ISSN 0144-2872

Eckersley, P., 2017. Cities and climate change: how historical legacies shape policy-making in English and German municipalities. Politics, 37 (2), pp. 151-166. ISSN 0263-3957

Ferry, L., Coombs, H. and Eckersley, P., 2017. Budgetary stewardship, innovation and working culture: identifying the missing ingredient in English and Welsh local authorities' recipes for austerity management. Financial Accountability & Management, 33 (2), pp. 220-243. ISSN 0267-4424

Ferry, L. and Eckersley, P., 2017. Debate: freedom, power and capacity - analysing the fallout from the UK's 'Brexit' referendum. Public Money & Management, 37 (1), pp. 2-3. ISSN 0954-0962

Ferry, L. and Murphy, P., 2017. What about financial sustainability of local government!—A critical review of accountability, transparency, and public assurance arrangements in England during austerity. International Journal of Public Administration.

Murphy, P. and Jones, M., 2016. Building the next model for intervention and turnaround in poorly performing local authorities in England. Local Government Studies, 42 (5), pp. 698-716.

Alcock, S., Greenhalgh, K., Taylor L. and Murphy, P.,   2015. Who pays for Gareth? Relying on Reservists: the UK Government's Strategic Defence and Security Review. The Journal of Finance and Management in Public Services.   The Journal of Finance and Management in Public Services, 14 (1).

Ferry, L. and Eckersley, P., 2015. Accountability and transparency: a nuanced response to Etzioni. Public Administration Review, 75 (1), pp. 11-12. ISSN 0033-3352

Ferry, L. and Eckersley, P., 2015. Budgeting and governing for deficit reduction in the UK public sector: act three ‘accountability and audit arrangements. Public Money & Management, 35 (3), pp. 203-210. ISSN 0954-0962

Ferry, L., Eckersley, P. and Zakaria, Z., 2015. Accountability and transparency in English local government: moving from ‘matching parts’ to ‘awkward couple’? Financial Accountability & Management, 31 (3), pp. 345-361.

Ferry, L., Murphy, P., Zakaria, Z. and Zakaria, Z., 2015. Implementing Key Performance Indicators in a government agency. The Journal of Finance and Management in Public Services, 14 (2).

Ferry, L., Eckersley, P. and Van Dooren, W., 2015. Local taxation and spending as a share of GDP in large Western European countries. Environment and Planning A, 47 (9), pp. 1779-1780. ISSN 0308-518X

Eckersley, P., Ferry, L. and Zakaria, Z., 2014. A ‘panoptical’ or ‘synoptical’ approach to monitoring performance? Local public services in England and the widening accountability gap. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 25 (6), pp. 529-538. ISSN 1045-2354

Eckersley, P. and Timm-Armold, P., 2014. Directly-elected mayors and the austerity agenda: lessons from the German experience. Public Money & Management, 34 (5), pp. 347-354. ISSN 0954-0962

Ferry, L., Zakaria, Z. and Eckersley, P., 2014. The role of budget speech: a Malaysian Government study. International Journal of Public Sector Management, 27 (7), pp. 564-580.

Murphy, P., 2014. Sport, physical activity and the establishment of Health and Wellbeing Boards in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire. Managing Leisure, 19 (2), pp. 92-104.

Murphy, P., Greenhalgh, K. and Jones, M., 2014. Housing and council tax benefits administration in England: a long-term perspective on the performance of the local government delivery system. Local Government Studies, 40 (5), pp. 729-744.

Prowle, A., Murphy, P. and Prowle, M., 2014. Managing escalating demand for public services in a time of financial austerity: a case study of family interventions. The Journal of Finance and Management in Public Services, 12 (1). ISSN 1475-1283

Barton, H. 2013 Adapting to the Future: The application of new approaches to business process improvement: Initial findings from a study of five UK police forces. Public Money and Management Vol. 18 (3) pp.221-225.

Barton, H. and Valero-Silva, N. 2013. Policing in Partnership: a case study in crime prevention. International Journal of Public Sector Management Vol. 26 (7) pp. 543-553.

Murphy, P., 2013. Public health and health and wellbeing boards: antecedents, theory and development. Perspectives in Public Health, 133 (5), pp. 248-253.

Ferry, L. and Eckersley, P., 2012. Budgeting and governing for deficit reduction in the UK public sector: act 2 ‘the annual budget’. Public Money & Management, 32 (2), pp. 119-126. ISSN 0954-0962

Liddle, J. and Murphy, P., 2012. Public administration in an era of austerity. Public Money and Management, 32 (2), pp. 83-86

Jones, M. and Liddle, J., 2011. Implementing the UK Central Government's policy agenda for improved third sector engagement: reflecting on issues arising from third sector commissioning workshops. International Journal of Public Sector Management, 24 (2), pp. 157-171.

Ferry, L. and Eckersley, P., 2011. Budgeting and governing for deficit reduction in the UK public sector: act one 'the Comprehensive Spending Review'. The Journal of Finance and Management in Public Services, 10 (1), pp. 14-23.

Murphy, P., Greenhalgh, K. and Jones, M., 2011. Comprehensive performance assessment and public services improvement in England? A case study of the benefits administration service in local government. Local Government Studies, 37 (6), pp. 579-599

Books and Chapters

Ferry, L., Glennon, R. and Murphy, P., 2019. Local government. In: P. Murphy, L. Ferry, R. Glennon and K. Greenhalgh, eds., Public service accountability: rekindling a debate. Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 47-73. ISBN 9783319933849

Glennon, R., Ferry, L. and Murphy, P., 2019. Our evaluative model. In: P Murphy, P., Ferry, L., Glennon, R. and Greenhalgh, K. eds., Public service accountability: rekindling a debate. Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 75-90. ISBN 9783319933849

Glennon, R., Ferry, L., Murphy, P. and Greenhalgh, K., 2019. But what is accountability? In: P. Murphy., L. Ferry, R. Glennon and K. Greenhalgh, eds., Public service accountability: rekindling a debate. Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 1-25. ISBN 9783319933849

Murphy, P., Ferry, L., Glennon, R. and Greenhalgh, K. 2019. Public service accountability: rekindling a debate. Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan.

Murphy, P., Glennon, R. and Ferry, L., 2019. Public service accountability - some reflections. In: P. Murphy, L. Ferry, R. Glennon and K. Greenhalgh, eds., Public service accountability: rekindling a debate. Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 127-140. ISBN 9783319933849

Murphy, P., Lakoma, K., Greenhalgh, K. and Taylor, L., 2019. A comparative appraisal of recent and proposed changes to the fire and rescue services in England and Scotland. In: P. WANKHADE, L. MCCANN and P. MURPHY, eds., Critical perspectives on the management and organization of emergency services. Routledge critical studies in public management. Abingdon: Routledge.

Eckersley, P., 2018. Power and capacity in urban climate governance: Germany and England compared. Oxford: Peter Lang.

Ferry, L. and Murphy, P., 2017. Local government under austerity, narrowing the accountability landscape in England. In: A. FARAZMAND, ed., Global encyclopaedia of public administration, public policy, and governance. Cham: Springer International Publishing, pp. 1-7.

Jones, M., 2017. English resilience in the face of austerity. In: I. Steccolini, M. Jones and I. Saliterer, eds., Governmental financial resilience: international perspectives on how local governments face austerity. Public policy and governance, 27. Bingley: Emerald. ISBN 9781787142633

Saliterer, I., Jones, M. and Steccolini, I., 2017. Introduction: governments and crises. In: I. Steccolini, M. Jones and I. Saliterer, eds., Governmental financial resilience: international perspectives on how local governments face austerity. Public policy and governance, 27. Bingley: Emerald.

Steccolini, I., Jones, M. and Saliterer, I., 2017. Governmental financial resilience: international perspectives on how local governments face austerity. Public policy and governance. Bingley: Emerald.

Steccolini, I., Jones, M. and Saliterer, I., 2017. Conclusion. In: I. Steccolini, M. Jones and I. Saliterer, eds., Governmental financial resilience: international perspectives on how local governments face austerity. Public policy and governance, 27. Bingley: Emerald. ISBN 9781787142633

Osbourne, S., Radnor, Z. and Glennon, R., 2016. Public management theory. In: C. ANSELL and J. TORFING, eds., Handbook on theories of governance. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, pp. 46-60.

Murphy, P., 2014. The development of the strategic state and the performance management of local authorities in England. In: P. Joyce and A. Drumaux, eds., Strategic management in public organizations: European practices and perspectives. Abingdon: Routledge, 2014, pp. 243-255.

Eckersley, P. and Ferry, L., 2017. Accountable to whom? Data transparency, depoliticisation and the myth of the market in English local government. In: B. Cuadrado-Ballesteros and I.M. Garcia-Sanchez, eds., Local governments in the digital era: looking for accountability. Hauppauge, New York: Nova Science Publishers. ISBN 9781634858977

Jackson, P. and Eckersley, P.M., 2003. Organizations in the electronic age. In: P.M. Eckersley, L. Harris and P. Jackson, eds., e-Business fundamentals: managing organizations in the electronic age. Routledge e-Business . London: Routledge, pp. 3-10. ISBN 9780203402467

Curthroys, N., Eckersley, P.M. and Jackson, P., 2003. e-Government. In: P.M. Eckersley, L. Harris and P. Jackson, eds., e-Business fundamentals: managing organizations in the electronic age. Routledge e-Business . London: Routledge, pp. 227-258.

Reports

Eckersley, P., Murphy P. and Ferry, L., 2019. Local Government Finance and the 2019 Spending Review inquiry: written submission to the House of Commons committee on Housing, Communities and Local Government. Nottingham: Nottingham Trent University.

Murphy, P. 2019 Oral evidence presented to the Housing, Communities and Local Government Select Committee of the House of Commons relating to Local Government Finance and the Spending Review 2019. London: House of Commons.

Burns, C., Carter, N., Cowell, R., Eckersley, P., Farstad, F., Gravey, V., Jordan, A., Moore, B. and Reid, C., 2018. Environmental policy in a devolved United Kingdom: challenges and opportunities after Brexit. London: UK in a Changing Europe.

Cowell, R., Burns, C., Carter, N., Eckersley, P., Farstad, F., Gravey, V., Jordan, A., Moore, B. and Reid, C., 2018. Wales: challenges and opportunities for post-Brexit environmental governance. London: UK in a Changing Europe.

Gravey, V., Burns, C., Carter, N., Cowell, R., Eckersley, P., Farstad, F., Jordan, A., Moore, B. and Reid, C., 2018. Northern Ireland: challenges and opportunities for post-Brexit environmental governance. London: UK in a Changing Europe.

Murphy, P., Glennon, R., Eckersley, P. and Lakoma, K., 2018. Response to the Consultation on the safe and planned future of Scottish Fire and Rescue Service. Nottingham: Nottingham Business School, Nottingham Trent University.

Murphy, P., Lakoma, K., Greenhalgh, K., Glennon, R. and Eckersley, P., 2018. Response to call for evidence for the post-legislative scrutiny of the Police and Fire Reform (Scotland) Act 2012 by The Scottish Parliament. Nottingham: Nottingham Business School, Nottingham Trent University.

Reid, C., Burns, C., Carter, N., Cowell, R., Eckersley, P., Farstad, F., Gravey, V., Jordan, A. and Moore, B., 2018. Scotland: challenges and opportunities for post-Brexit environmental governance. London: UK in a Changing Europe.

Murphy, P., 2016. A briefing paper on the Governments Single Departmental Plans 2015-2020 prepared for the National Audit Office as part of the national study. Confidential report for NAO. Nottingham: Nottingham Trent University.

Rossiter, W., Bickerton, C., Canavan, R., Lawton, C. and Murphy, P., 2016. NET Phase Two local economic evaluation: report 2: impact evaluation findings: final report. Research report for Tramlink. Nottingham.

Ferry, L. and Murphy, P., 2015.  Financial sustainability, accountability and transparency across local public service bodies in England under austerity. Briefing note to Centre for Public Scrutiny (CfPS) Advisory Board.

Ferry, L. and Murphy, P., 2015.  Financial sustainability, accountability and transparency across local public service bodies in England under austerity. Report to National Audit Office (NAO).

Jones, M. and Murphy, P., 2015.  External validation of the Nottinghamshire County Council workforce mobilisation project. Nottingham: NTU.

Barbera, C., Jones, M., and Steccolini, I., 2014 Governmental financial resilience under austerity: the case of English local authorities. Chartered Institute of Management Accountants. London

Professional Journal and Newspaper Articles

Glennon, R. and Murphy, P., 2018. Have we forgotten what accountability means? Public Sector Focus (17), pp. 46-47.

Murphy, P. and Glennon, R., 2016.  The devil in the detail of Brexit starts to emerge. Public Sector Focus (6).

Murphy, P., 2016. If PCCs are to take over fire services, they need to prove these six things. The Guardian.

Murphy, P., 2016. The civil service must keep calm and carry on with Brexit – but can it? The Conversation

Collaboration

  • Professor Ileana Steccolini of Essex University
  • Professor Iris Saliterer of Freiberg University.
  • Dr Enrico Guarini of University of Milano-Bicocca, Milan
  • Carmela Barbera of Bocconi School of Management, Milan
  • Professor Anthony Zito (Newcastle University)
  • Professor Charlotte Burns (University of Sheffield),
  • Dr Paul Tobin (University of Manchester),
  • Professor Rüdiger Wurzel (Hull University),
  • Dr Zamzulaila Zakaria (International Islamic University, Malaysia)
  • Klaus-Peter Timm-Arnold (North Rhine-Westphalian Audit Commission).
  • Professor Joyce Liddle of Northumbria
  • Professor Paul Joyce of Birmingham University
  • Dr Russ Glennon of Manchester Metropolitan University
  • The Accounting and Finance Special Interest Group (SIG) of the International Research Society for Public Management.
  • Strategic Management SIG of the European Group Public Management
  • Public Governance and Management SIG of the British Academy of Management

Working with us

The project maintains close working relationships with associate members from both academia and from central and local government who regularly participate and contribute to the programmes activities.

Related staff

The project is keen to include colleagues (distinguished and new) who are interested in the programmes scholar activity, policy and practitioner dialogue either to enhance their teaching and learning or to promote and strengthen relations with practice as well as to participate in theoretical and applied research.