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Pete Murphy

Peter Murphy


Nottingham Business School

Staff Group(s)
Department of Accounting and Finance Nottingham Civic Exchange


Peter Murphy is the Director of the Public Policy and Management Research Group within the Centre for Economics, Policy and Public Management at Nottingham Business School, and Professor of Public Policy and Management. He teaches at undergraduate, postgraduate, and executive levels, and supervises research dissertations for undergraduate and postgraduate degrees.

His research focuses on public policy, and in particular the performance management, governance, scrutiny, public assurance, and value-for-money arrangements of locally delivered public services.

Peter is the Vice Chair (Research) of the Public Administration Committee of the Joint Universities Council, a member of the Advisory Board of the Centre for Public Scrutiny and a member of the Criteria Panel for the Business and Management (C17) unit of REF2021.

Career overview

Prior to joining the business school from 2000 to 2009 he was a Senior Civil Servant in four Whitehall departments.

He spent 23 years in Local Government most recently as Chief Executive of Melton Borough Council.

He has been a Chair or Non-Executive Board member in over 30 Public Private and third Sector organisations for over 40 years.

On Thursday 24 January 2019 Pete delivered his Inaugural Lecture: “Do they say what they do and do what they say?” A reflection on politicians and public policy makers.

Research areas

Peter is the Head of Research at Nottingham Business School and Director of the Public Policy and Management Research Group, which is a research group within the Centre for Economics, Policy and Public Management (CEPPM). It is one of the 9 research centres, which constitute the research community at Nottingham Business School.

The Public Management and Governance Research Group is currently structured around three areas of interest, each with a research unit to operationalise its projects. These are:

  • Central and Local Government,
  • Health and Social Care
  • Emergency Services.

Peter contributes to all three of the units and the current research activity is articulated on the groups’ dedicated pages on the new NTU Research website.

The group works with an extensive network of associates, visiting scholars, and collaborators both within NTU and in the wider academic and practitioner community. These associates contributed hugely to the group’s outputs and to its influence in both academia and on the practice of public services.

Peter specialises in practically based and applied research. He is particularly interested in interdisciplinary research, and has attracted financial support from research consultancies and professional institutions as well traditional grant-awarding bodies. Most recently, he has been involved in producing a series of reports and presentations for the National Audit Office, the National Fire Chiefs Council, the Fire Sector Federation and the Centre for Public Scrutiny.

Please visit the NTU Doctoral School website for information on doctoral research opportunities at NBS.

External activity

Peter has acted as an advisor to various arms of central and local government for many years, and has also held a number of ministerial appointments in addition to his main employment. He has also acted as a coach or mentor to a series of senior officials within national and local government, the NHS, the Police and the Fire Sector for over 35 years.

He is currently a Vice Chair (Research) of the Public Administration Committee of the Joint University Council and the Learned Society for Public Administration. He established and has been the Joint Editor of the International Journal of Emergency Services and has edited special editions of various public management journals.

He has organised and contributed to numerous academic conference panels, particularly the International Research Society for Public Management, the European Group for Public Administration, and the Public Administration Committee conferences. He regularly reviews articles for various academic journals, grant awarding bodies and publishers and has been an external examiner for Edge Hill University.

Peter is a member of the Advisory Board for the Centre for Public Scrutiny and the Academic Advisory Group of Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services. He is active in his professional institutes, including the Royal Town Planning Institute, the Planning Officers Society, The Chartered Institute of Sport and Physical Activity, and the RSA.

Sponsors and collaborators

Peter currently has consultancy or research contracts with the NHS and the National Fire Chiefs Council. He has recently completed a series of reports for the National Audit Office and the Centre for Public Scrutiny, and he regularly contributes masterclasses to the leadership programmes of the Local Government Association and the NHS.

His academic collaborators outside of NTU include Kirsten Greenhalgh from Nottingham University; Professor Joyce Liddle at Northumbria University ; Dr Russ Glennon at Manchester Metropolitan University; Professor Paresh Wankhade at Edgehill University, and Professor Laurence Ferry at Durham University;

His academic collaborators within NTU include Dr Martin Jones, Dr Peter Eckersley, Katarzyna Lakoma, Dr Michael Hewitt, and Bernard Kofi Dom.


Murphy, P. Allison, M. and Garfield, T. (2006). Towards an excellent service: Sport Culture and Leisure Services. Chief Leisure Officers Association/Institute of Leisure and Amenity Management. London.

Murphy, P. Percival, R. Addison, L. and Moore, K (2005). Towards an excellent service: Town and country planning services. Planning Officers Society Aylesbury.

Murphy, P. Percival, R. and Moore, K. (2000). A guide to Best Value and Planning. Planning Officers Society Aylesbury

Murphy, P. (2000). First Options Review: Inspectorate review an opportunity for a radical agenda. Planning Newspaper. London: EMAP Publishing Limited.

Murphy, P. (1999). Time is money: Best Value and Performance Plans. Local Government Chronicle. London: EMAP Publishing Limited

Murphy, P. Crouch, M. Ashworth, G. Ebbs, M. and Morris, M. (1997). Better Local Plans: A guide to writing effective policies. Planning Officers Society Aylesbury

Murphy, P. (1997). Third party rights of appeal. Housing and Planning Review 50 (1) pp. 18-20. ISSN 0018-6589.

Murphy, P. (1995). First independent appraisal of a Local Plan at Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council. New Spectrum. East Midlands RTPI.

Murphy, P. (1995). Formal evidence submitted to the Planning Inspectorate Prior Options Study. DoE Planning Directorate. London: TSO.

Murphy, P. (1994). The East Midlands Regional Guidance One step forward? Town and Country Planning 63 (10), pp.263-264. ISSN 0040-9960.

See all of Peter Murphy's publications...

Press expertise

Peter appears regularly in the press both in the broadcasting press and in print.

Local and central government policy and practice
Health and Social Care
Emergency services
Planning and development
Public Governance and Public Assurance
Public sector finance, and performance management