Professor Kieran Walshe

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Profile photo of: Professor Kieran Walshe Email: Show Email Address
Position: Professor of Health Policy and Management
Academic unit: Innovation, Management and Policy


Kieran Walshe is Professor of Health Policy and Management at Manchester Business School, and head of the health management group at MBS. He is also a non-executive director of the Christie NHS Foundation Trust, a board member of the UK Health Services Research Network and a member of the US AcademyHealth International Advisory Board. He was a member of the REF2014 panel for public health,health services research and primary care. He was associate director of the National Institute of Health Research health services and delivery research programme from 2012 to 2015, and directed the NIHR service delivery and organisation research programme from 2008 to 2011. He edited the journal Health Services Management Research from 2011 to 2015 and was a board member and scientific committee chair of the European Health Management Association from 2008 to 2015. From 2003 to 2006 he directed the Centre for Public Policy and Management in Manchester Business School, and from 2009 to 2011 he directed the university's Institute of Health Sciences.

He has twenty-five years experience in health policy, health management and health services research. He has previously worked at the University of Birmingham, at the University of California at Berkeley as a Harkness Fellow, and at the King's Fund in London, and has a professional background in healthcare management. He often works at the interface between research, policy and practice and values the opportunities it offers to engage with the policy and practitioner communities and to put ideas into action. He has particular interests and expertise in quality and performance in healthcare organisations; the governance, accountability and performance of public services; and the use of evidence in policy evaluation and learning. He has led a wide range of research projects funded by the ESRC, Department of Health, NIHR, and EU FP7 programmes, and other government departments and NHS organisations. He has advised many government agencies and organisations, in the UK and internationally, including acting as an advisor on health reforms to the House of Commons health select committee. His current research is mainly focused on reforms to health professions regulation, on the use of inspection and rating in the regulation of healthcare organisations and services; and on organisational capabilities and processes for improvement.

He tweets as @kieran_walshe

Research Interests

Kieran Walshe's research is mainly concerned with quality and performance in healthcare organisations; the governance, accountability and performance of public services; and the use of evidence in policy evaluation and learning. Recent research has explored quality and performance assessment and improvement, the governance and accountability of public services, and systems of regulation, scrutiny and oversight. He has a long standing interest in quality and safety in healthcare including clinical governance, quality measurement, accreditation, adverse events and patient safety. he has also researched organisational failure and turnaround, major service failures and their consequences, and the use of public inquiries and investigations.

He has been the lead investigator/co-investigator of over 40 research grants from a range of funders including the Economic and Social Research Council, Department of Health, National Institute of Health Research, Department for Communities and Local Government, European Commission, Healthcare Commission, National Audit Office, BUPA Foundation, Canadian Health Services Research Foundation, Commonwealth Fund, and others. In his time at the University of Manchester has been principal or co-investigator in research grants totalling about £6.3 million, ahd he is currently the principal investigator on four ongoing grants totalling £1.65 million.

He has written six authored or edited books, and over 90 papers in academic peer reviewed journals, plus many more in practitioner journals and other forums. He has written for a wide range of academic and professional journals, including the British Medical Journal, Health Service Journal, Implementation Science, Health Affairs, Milbank Quarterly, Public Money and Management, and Quality and Safety in Healthcare. His books include Regulating Healthcare: A Prescription for Improvement (2003); Patient Safety: Research into Practice (2005); Healthcare Management (2006, 2011, 2016 forthcoming); Health Policy and Management: A Reader (2009); and From Knowing to Doing: Connecting Knowledge and Performance in Public Services (2010).

Programme involvement

Specialist fields




Publication summary




Working papers

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Showing 86 publication(s)


  • Ulph, F., Wright, S., Dharni, N., Payne, K., Lavender, T., Bennett, R., ... Walshe, K. (2017). Provision of Information about newborn screening antenatally: a sequential exploratory mixed methods project. In NIHR Health Technology Assessment .. Publication link: 4afc0451-0910-4ee9-8505-35dd75acfd1b
  • Lorne, C., Coleman, A., Mcdonald, E., Walshe, K., Lau, Y-S., Turner, A., & Sutton, M. (2017). Researching health and social care devolution: learning for Greater Manchester. Interim findings. University of Manchetser.. Publication link: b25fc9e3-4dbb-462a-8df8-b8284c8c2631


  • Boyd, A., Hillier, C., Tazzyman, A., Walshe, K., Archer, J., Bryce, M., ... Gutacker, N. (2016). Implementing medical revalidation: organisational changes and impacts. University of Manchester.. Publication link: 7f68a859-b337-4b7e-abca-b8cc2dbaa9ee


  • Walshe, K., & Smith, J. (2015). Tackling the NHS’s unprecedented deficit and securing reform:the new government’s response has so far largely missed the point.British Medical Journal. DOI: 10.1136/bmj.h4670. Publication link: e1e99434-f304-4cd6-a462-15d7a3f28946



  • Walshe, K., McKee, M., Groenwegen, P., Hansen, J., Figueras, J., Boccia, S., & Ricciardi, W. (2013). Reshaping the agenda of the European Commission for the health systems and policy research in Europe within Horizon 2020.Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Public Health. DOI: 10.2427/8951. Publication link: 76a11b4a-ba63-48ba-af55-1e742df4048b


  • Walshe, K. (2012). The consequences of abandoning the health and social care bill: Even at this late stage, the government would be wise to withdraw the bill. BMJ, 344(7842), [e748]. DOI: 10.1136/bmj.e748. Publication link: 912aaf1d-8f06-48cc-93c5-0e47e41a634e



  • Phipps, D., Noyce, P., Walshe, K., Parker, D., & Ashcroft, D. (2010). What factors should you focus on to provide meaningful risk assessments?Pharmaceutical Journal, 284(7595), 312. . Publication link: b2507e72-7966-40a7-a5b9-51a67b6c47a2
  • Walshe, K., Harvey, G., & Jas, P. (2010). From knowing to doing: connecting knowledge and performance in public services. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.. Publication link: 7c324c5f-1a1a-4f88-ac17-c211b53462bd


  • Groene, O., Klazinga, N., Walshe, K., Cucic, C., Shaw, C. D., & Suñol, R. (2009). Learning from MARQuls: Future direction of quality and safety in hospital care in the European Union. Quality in Health Care, 18(1), 69-74. DOI: 10.1136/qshc.2008.029447. Publication link: 2c26b19d-8504-4645-8bfa-1421231d7c25
  • Mahon, A., Walshe, K., & Chambers, N. (2009). A reader in health policy and management. (1 ed.) Milton Keynes: Open University Press.. Publication link: fba1e188-d784-4c11-ae94-8c1e08aab9ed


  • Spencer, E., & Walshe, K. (2008). Quality and safety in Europe: a growing challenge for policymakers. Harvard Health Policy Review, 9(1), 46-54. . Publication link: c5c9845c-d36a-4cea-ba4e-02f34c7d03ae


  • Waterman, H., Marshall, M., Noble, J., Davies, H., Walshe, K., Sheaff, R., & Elwyn, G. (2007). The role of action research in the investigation and diffusion of innovations in health care: The PRIDE project. Qualitative Health Research, 17(3), 373-381. DOI: 10.1177/1049732306298976. Publication link: fe9947d4-a03c-43da-8bcd-34bcd3480e3b


  • Marshall, M., Noble, J., Davies, H., Waterman, H., Walshe, K., Sheaff, R., & Elwyn, G. (2006). Development of an information source for patients and the public about general practice services: an action research study. Health Expectations, 9(3), 265-274. DOI: 10.1111/j.1369-7625.2006.00394.x. Publication link: a2336282-ac72-4efb-ae29-2d82fd9f0334
  • Lavis, J., Davies, H. T., Gruen, R., Walshe, K., & Farquhar, C. M. (2006). Working within and beyond the Cochrane Collaboration to make systematic reviews more useful to healthcare managers and policymakers. Healthcare Policy, 1(2), 21-33. . Publication link: 9f49b963-c3cd-42c8-a8ce-be05550ae559
  • Benson, L. A., Boyd, A., & Walshe, K. (2006). Learning from regulatory interventions in healthcare. The Commission for Health Improvement and its clinical governance review process. Clinical Governance, 11(3), 213-224. DOI: 10.1108/14777270610683146. Publication link: 73b24b81-fdf2-42c9-a132-e98812421f44


  • Walshe, K., Vincent, C. A., Davy, C., Esmail, A., Neale, G., Elstein, M., & Firth, C. J. (2005). Learning From Litigation: the role of claims analysis in patient safety. In host publication.. Publication link: 54017659-6d32-4001-b43b-480d07457609
  • McDonald, R., Waring, J., Harrison, S., Walshe, K., & Boaden, R. (2005). Rules and guidelines in clinical practice: A qualitative study in operating theatres of doctors' and nurses' views. Quality and Safety in Health Care, 14(4), 290-294. DOI: 10.1136/qshc.2005.013912. Publication link: 483fa745-a075-4874-926a-c943648e80a8
  • Giles, S. J., Cook, G. A., Jones, M. A., Todd, B., Mason, M., Muddu, B. N., & Walshe, K. (2005). Evaluating the effectiveness of a multi-professionally agreed list of adverse events for clinical incident reporting in Trauma and Orthopaedics. A follow-up study. Clinical Governance, 10(3), 217-230. DOI: 10.1108/14777270510612866. Publication link: 3a05c292-3ac4-4a88-b32a-6df3c496fd31
  • Mcbride, A., Mustchin, S., Cox, A., Hyde, P., Walshe, K., & Antonacopoulou, E. (2005). Mapping the Progress of Skill Escalator Activities: early results from a survey of learning and development professionals within NHS Trusts. Dept of Health Policy Research Unit.. Publication link: df917342-3cf6-4ef1-a5d8-8bebf230ac99
  • Pawson, R., Greenhalgh, T., Harvey, G., & Walshe, K. (2005). Realist review - A new method of systematic review designed for complex policy interventions. Journal of Health Services Research and Policy, 10(1), 21-34. DOI: 10.1258/1355819054308530. Publication link: b30f2b76-8440-4fb2-be34-ba83ad4cc669


  • Pawson, R., Greenhalgh, T., Harvey, G., & Walshe, K. (2004). Using realist methods to produce syntheses of evidence for use by managers and policy makers. (CHSRF/SDO). No publisher name.. Publication link: ee288f82-c2d0-4491-8544-22a326d7f918
  • Benson, L., Venning, P., Young, R., Walshe, K., & Mullen, C. (2004). Beginning to Reinvigorate the Workforce. British Journal of Health Care Management, 10(9). . Publication link: fa10ef0e-0995-4301-8089-b9c99dbbb674
  • Walshe, K., & Shortell, S. M. (2004). When things go wrong: How health care organizations deal with major failures - Important opportunities for improvement will be missed if we fail to investigate and learn from the "airplane crashes" of health care. Health Affairs, 23(3), 103-111. DOI: 10.1377/hlthaff.23.3.103. Publication link: b2624095-4ba4-4509-8ae3-89c70fec4a48
  • Walshe, K., & Shortell, S. M. (2004). What Happens When Things Go Wrong: how healthcare organisations deal with major failures. Unknown Journal, 23. . Publication link: 9f132c70-be69-40e9-af48-1f1635128516
  • Walshe, K., Hunter, D., Smith, J., Dixon, J., Edwards, N., Mays, N., ... Robinson, R. (2004). Primary Care Trusts: premature reorganisation with mergers may be harmful [editorial]. Unknown Journal. . Publication link: e0784a4c-8c9f-4c35-a813-a758417e59e7
  • Walshe, K., Vincent, C. A., Gray, A., Esmail, A., Fenn, P., Rivero-Arias, O., ... Trevethick, K. (2004). The Epidemiology of Error : an analysis of databases of clinical negligence litigation. University of Manchester.. Publication link: 451b8927-7022-434e-a6c3-3938e226eaf5
  • Walshe, K., Vincent, C. A., Esmail, A., Neale, G., Elstein, M., & Firth, C. J. (2004). Learning from Litigation: an analysis of claims for clinical negligence. University of Manchester.. Publication link: 156cfec7-1a29-43c6-9e95-7a556da67ff4
  • Giles, S., Cook, G., Jones, M., Todd, B., Mason, M., & Walshe, K. (2004). Developing a multiprofessionally agreed list of adverse events for clinical incident reporting in trauma. Clinical Governance: an international Journal, 9. . Publication link: 8d0fbefa-0fdb-4d22-9c31-c5337749fd95
  • Freeman, T., & Walshe, K. (2004). Achieving progress through clinical governance? A national study of healthcare managers' perceptions in the NHS in England. Quality and Safety in Health Care, 13. . Publication link: 92604aa3-4854-47f0-90c3-52df8e9f4e7e


  • Walshe, K., Hyde, P., & Mcbride, A. (2003). Making a Start on Workforce Redesign: early lessons from the Changing Workforce Programme. Dept of Health Policy Research Unit.. Publication link: a90d0537-ca61-4807-a018-5ceb8103a473


  • Walshe, K. (2002). All Change ? Implementing clinical governance in NHS trusts in England. Manchester: MCHM, University of Manchester.. Publication link: 5bf3c30d-bd29-4e9c-a801-049a7a4a1585
  • Walshe, K. (2002). The Evaluation of the commission of Health Improvement's performance and impact on the NHS: a scoping review. MCHM, University of Manchester.. Publication link: 4ac3b309-f501-48fe-80ea-74aa776fe6fd
  • Walshe, K., & Harrington, C. (2002). The Regulation of Nursing Facilities in the US: an analysis of the resources and performance of state survey agencies. Unknown Journal. . Publication link: b409091a-01ad-4f3f-b09d-b4c292826e62


  • Walshe, K. (2001). The external review of quality improvement in healthcare organisations: a qualitative study. Unknown Journal, 13(5). . Publication link: f6efb7ef-b393-4740-ac1e-f9ae1a546f0c
  • Walshe, K., & Vincent, C. A. (2001). Clinical Risk Management and the Analysis of Clinical Incidents. In host publication. London: Royal Society of Medicine Press. . Publication link: 4b70d7fc-3afc-427c-858d-be0581af786a
  • Freeman, T., Latham, L., Walshe, K., Wallace, L., & Spurgeon, P. (2001). How do trusts intend to measure progress in clinical governance?Journal of Clinical Governance, 9(1), 33-39. . Publication link: 4bc3e9d4-4061-43f4-b5c4-7178a52e9fb6
  • Wallace, L. M., Freeman, T., Latham, L., Walshe, K., & Spurgeon, P. (2001). Organisational strategies for changing clinical practice: How trusts are meeting the challenges of clinical governance. Quality in Health Care, 10(2), 76-82. DOI: 10.1136/qhc.10.2.76. Publication link: 1d3c3290-7316-43ab-a492-5301b168bc3a
  • Freeman, T., Latham, L., Walshe, K., Wallace, L., & Spurgeon, P. (2001). Evaluating mandated quality improvement: Results of a survey in the NHS in England. Journal of Clinical Excellence, 3(1), 15-22. . Publication link: 6daeaaa0-0b90-4b4d-87e4-d00ba13e97c9
  • Wallace, L., Spurgeon, P., Latham, L., Freeman, T., & Walshe, K. (2001). Clinical governance, organisational culture and change management in the new NHS. Clinician in Management, 10(1), 23-31. . Publication link: 889ea2bd-c126-41a1-af7c-4dd4f7c8391d