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Malcolm Prowle

External Supervisor

Nottingham Business School

Staff Group(s)
Department of Accounting and Finance


Professor Prowle is involved in teaching various aspects of financial management, strategic planning and performance management on a wide range of postgraduate programmes. He also supervises students on Masters programmes who are undertaking research and consultancy projects as part of their programme of study.

He undertakes research in a number of fields and has an extensive publications record including seven full-length books. He is also a frequent commentator on regional and national media on matters concerned with economic and business policy and the finance of public services.He is a member of two research groups in the business school:

  • Money, Finance and Risk Research Group
  • Public Management and Governance Research Group

He is joint director of the Health and Social Care Finance Research Group (HSCFRU) which is concerned with undertaking an disseminating research concerned with finance and financial management in the health and social care sectors.

Career overview

Professor Prowle has extensive academic and professional experience of: financial management, strategy and performance management in both private and the public sectors gained through wide ranging experience (in the UK and overseas) of:

  • Senior management – he has held senior financial management posts (up to finance director) in several organisations.
  • Management Consultancy – he has held senior positions with two major international consulting firms (KPMG and PWC) where he worked on assignments for a wide range of public and private sector clients in both the UK and overseas.
  • Academic teaching and research – he has held university posts at the Universities of Warwick, Wolverhampton and Nottingham Trent and a number of visiting academic posts at other universities including, Bristol, Aston and University of Wales College of Medicine.

Professor Prowle is an acknowledged international expert on the finance and management of the public services. He has worked at the highest levels of government and has advised Ministers, Ambassadors, senior civil servants, public service managers and service professionals on a variety of public policy and policy implementation issues. He has been a financial adviser to a House of Commons Select Committee, an adviser to two shadow ministers and a consultant to the World Health Organisation. He has substantial international experience and has worked on major consultancy projects concerning public service reform for the Governments of Brazil, Turkey, India and Cyprus. He has also undertaken a number of study tours of public services in overseas countries (Sweden and USA) and has presented papers at several international events. He has worked for a number of international organisations including UNHCR, IPPF, EU, World Bank etc.

Professor Prowle has extensive teaching experience particularly at the doctoral, post-graduate and post-experience levels. He is currently supervising four PhD students and six DBA students. He also has extensive involvement in the delivery of post-experience courses involving programmes for company managers, NHS senior managers, HE senior managers and senior staff of the National Audit Office (TCU) of the Government of Brazil and the Government of Turkey.

Professor Prowle is an active researcher and has led and/or participated in many funded research projects, which have led to published research reports and papers. He has spoken and presented papers at a wide range of events and conferences including that of: the Prime Ministers Policy Unit, the Government Accounting Service, the CBI, the World Health Organisation and the Karolinska Institute (Sweden). He has over eighty publications to his name. This includes seven full-length books, numerous published research reports and papers in both peer refereed academic journals and professional journals. He is a frequent media commentator on economic and public finance issues covering radio, television and print.

Research areas

Professor Prowle’s main research and scholarly interests can be summarised as:

  • the development of approaches to strategic management and performance improvement in the public and private sectors
  • the planning and finance of public services in a time of financial and economic austerity
  • improving the relevance and application of management accounting in modern business environments.

Current projects

  • Developing value for money cultures in the public sector
  • Sustainability of public services and inter-generational equity
  • Management accounting in modern business environments

Past Projects

  • Examination of the decision making factors resulting in pressures on emergency care services and the development of a model for the alleviation of pressures – supported by Nottingham Clinical Commissioning Group
  • Sustainable Health Systems: An International Study - supported by a grant of from the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants
  • Leadership and public sector financial management in a time of austerity - supported by a grant of from the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants
  • Financial leadership in SMEs - supported by a grant of from the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants
  • The impact of economic recession on business strategy - supported by a grant of from the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants
  • The effectiveness of budgeting systems in the NHS - supported by a grant of £3,000 from the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants
  • Reforming public administration in Turkey - supported by a grant of £25,000 from the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office
  • Developing Activity Based Costing in a public body
  • Value for money in preventative services – supported by Blaenau Gwent County Council

Inaugural Lecture

In November 2009, Professor Prowle gave his inaugural lecture, attended by over a hundred people entitled 'Where now for public services?'

Information for prospective research students

Professor Prowle is happy to discuss proposals from potential research students interested in undertaking research in the following area:-

  • Management accounting in business and public sector organisations
  • Public service finance and management.

External activity

  • 2010 – present: Member of Global Public Sector Forum of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants
  • 2012 – present: Member of editorial board – Journal of Public and Municipal Finance
  • 2010 – present: Member of the financial management panel of Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA)
  • 2004 – 2013: Visiting Professor: Centre for Accounting and Finance, Open University Business School
  • 2008 – 2010: Member of Business Improvement Board, Nottinghamshire County Council
  • 1995 – 1997: Visiting Senior Research Fellow, Cardiff University
  • 1992 – 1995: Visiting Research Associate, University of Bristol
  • 1990 – 1992: Financial Adviser to the House of Commons Health Select Committee
  • 1988 – 1990: Visiting consultant in health finance and economics, World Health Organisation
  • 1984 – 1986 and 1993-1995: Special adviser to Shadow Secretary of State for Health

Sponsors and collaborators

  • The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)
  • The Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA)
  • The Healthcare Financial Management Association
  • The Chartered Institute Management Accounting (CIMA)
  • The University of Castilla, La Mancha, Spain

Press expertise

Professor Prowle is an experienced media commentator and is regularly interviewed by local and national print and broadcast press on a variety of topics relating to his expertise, such as Private Finance Initiatives (PFIs), NHS finances and government spending cuts. He is also a regular contributor to professional finance and public services publications and maintains a personal blogsite.

He can offer comment on issues relating to business performance; economic development; public sector finances; public sector management; and health and social care finance.