Accounting & Business

Remembering dementia

The Alzheimer’s Society is the UK’s leading dementia charity and provides essential services to those with the disease and their families. For Robert Butler FCCA, that was a good reason to join as its CFO. “I spent most of my career in the commercial sector,” he explains. “I came late to the not-for-profit sector four […]

Remembering dementia Read More »

Sue Gray: shaking up Northern Ireland’s Civil Service

In her role as the Cabinet Office’s director general of propriety and ethics, Sue Gray was dubbed ‘the most powerful woman in Britain’ by the ConservativeHome website. Today, though, she has a very different role as permanent secretary of Northern Ireland’s Department of Finance.

Sue Gray: shaking up Northern Ireland’s Civil Service Read More »


Profit shifting costs countries $100bn to $240bn in lost tax revenue each year, estimates the OECD, with developing nations particularly losing out. In response, the OECD is leading on the Base Erosion and Profit Shifting – BEPS – initiative to reduce the loss in tax revenues. BEPS is proposed through two measures. Pillar One addresses

BEPS Read More »

Public sector innovation

Participatory budgeting is being used by public bodies around the world to address some of the critical challenges they face. These include lack of trust in the public sector, corruption, the democratic deficit and demands for citizen empowerment. Participatory budgeting – PB – offers the opportunity for community involvement in decision-making, while providing financial transparency.

Public sector innovation Read More »

Funding the arts

Harvey Weinstein promised $5m to the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts as an endowment for women filmmakers.  As allegations surfaced about the Hollywood producer’s sexual abuse of women, the University decided this was a gift they could do without. Charitable donations may reflect a desire to do good in the world.  But for

Funding the arts Read More »

Social mobility

Countries and regions with poor social mobility are also more prone to corruption, or at least the perception of corruption, according to analysis undertaken by ACCA.  These findings – from the report ‘Purpose and the profession: Social mobility and the public sector’ – were unveiled at ACCA’s Public Sector Conference, which took place at Church

Social mobility Read More »

Leprechaun economics

United States’ economist Paul Krugman used the term ‘leprechaun economics’ to explain the disparity between Ireland’s national accounts and the less glorious reality on the ground.  “Ireland, famously, is a country where GDP vastly exceeds national income, by a growing margin,” he explained.  “The reason is a low corporate tax rate, which attracts both real foreign

Leprechaun economics Read More »

Baltic fintech

The Baltic States – Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania – are world leaders in fintech.  According to a World Economic Forum report ­– ‘Europe’s Hidden Entrepreneurs’ –  Estonia is Europe’s number one entrepreneurial ‘hotspot’, with Latvia third and Lithuania seventh.  Technological development, including fintech, sits at the heart of the countries’ progress.   “On a recent

Baltic fintech Read More »

Hope for social housing

Housing associations are feeling more confident and more positive.  Prime minister Theresa May made a major speech this autumn at the annual conference of the National Housing Federation, the body representing English housing associations.   “I can announce that new longer-term partnerships will be opened-up to the most ambitious housing associations through a ground-breaking £2bn

Hope for social housing Read More »

John Sayles profile

Supplier due diligence is a hot topic in government following the collapse of Carillion and profit warnings from other large public sector contractors.  This places John Sayles FCCA at the sharp end of events.  John has been head of commercial finance at Crown Commercial Service for the last three years, heading up a new function

John Sayles profile Read More »

Councils in crisis

The crisis at Northamptonshire County Council is perhaps the most stark example, but its financial difficulties are far from unique.  Central government’s phasing out of the revenue support grant to local authorities, part of the austerity programme, has left many councils struggling to cope.   One of the first actions of newly appointed secretary of

Councils in crisis Read More »