Financial Strategy for Public Managers
Posted: May 9, 2019 | Updated: October 5, 2021
Author: Sharon Kioko, Justin Marlowe, University of Washington
Financial Strategy for Public Managers is a new generation textbook for financial management in the public sector. It offers a thorough, applied, and concise introduction to the essential financial concepts and analytical tools that today’s effective public servants need to know. It starts “at the beginning” and assumes no prior knowledge or experience in financial management. Throughout the text, Kioko and Marlowe emphasize how financial information can and should inform every aspect of public sector strategy, from routine procurement decisions to budget preparation to program design to major new policy initiatives. They draw upon dozens of real-world examples, cases, and applied problems to bring that relationship between information and strategy to life. Unlike other public financial management texts, the authors also integrate foundational principles across the government, non-profit, and “hybrid/for-benefit” sectors. Coverage includes basic principles of accounting and financial reporting, preparing and analyzing financial statements, cost analysis, and the process and politics of budget preparation. The text also includes several large case studies appropriate for class discussion and/or graded assignments.
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Financial Strategy for Public Managers by Sharon Kioko, Justin Marlowe, University of Washington is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.
3.8 / 5
Q: The text covers all areas and ideas of the subject appropriately and provides an effective index and/or glossary
Yes, the book has covered all the important areas of Public Finance. More importantly, the chapters are well-organized. Though, index or the glossary could have been improved upon.
Comprehensiveness Rating: 4 out of 5
Q: Content is accurate, error-free and unbiased
The content is formidable, easy and error-free. The author has not apparently indulged in a bias that is very overt. The examples mentioned in the book are cogent and unbiased.
Content Accuracy Rating: 4 out of 5
Q: Content is up-to-date, but not in a way that will quickly make the text obsolete within a short period of time. The text is written and/or arranged in such a way that necessary updates will be relatively easy and straightforward to implement
I think that the content needs to be updated very often since it discusses the finances of the Federal and the State governments. The numbers used in the financial statements reflect the outdated assumptions affecting the economy at that time. The US economy is operating on entirely different set of assumptions right now-hence, the numbers related to finances are changing very rapidly.
Relevance Rating: 2 out of 5
Q: The text is written in lucid, accessible prose, and provides adequate context for any jargon/technical terminology used
The text is lucid though some terminologies used could be defined more in simpler terms. For instance Accounting standards such as GAAP and IFRS need more contextual description for those students who may not be having an Accounting background.
Clarity Rating: 3 out of 5
Q: The text is internally consistent in terms of terminology and framework
Yes it is consistent with very minimal out-of-scope reference.
Consistency Rating: 4 out of 5
Q: The text is easily and readily divisible into smaller reading sections that can be assigned at different points within the course (i.e., enormous blocks of text without subheadings should be avoided). The text should not be overly self-referential, and should be easily reorganized and realigned with various subunits of a course without presenting much disruption to the reader.
I like the fact that the text is divided into six chapters which are very easily distinguishable. Each one of them is divisible into smaller sections. For example, chapter 4 covers Transaction Analysis with clear explanations of the general entries and application of those transactions in a case in the same chapter. Hence, it can easily be realigned with chapter 3 which discussed Financial Statements and the ratios. The modules of chapter 3 and 4 can be connected without disrupting the flow of the text.
Modularity Rating: 4 out of 5
Q: The topics in the text are presented in a logical, clear fashion
Yes, they are. In terms of learning for undergraduate/post graduate students, the book offers comprehensive coverage of Accounting/Financial concepts. For instance, chapters- 3 to 6 merge Financial and Cost Accounting in a very logical and cohesive manner. The students are likely to get the summarized picture of basic Financial and Cost Accounting with understanding about Financial statements, ratios, various types of costs and then winding up the literature with discussion on Budgeting.
Organization Rating: 4 out of 5
Q: The text is free of significant interface issues, including navigation problems, distortion of images/charts, and any other display features that may distract or confuse the reader
The interface is reasonable though the tables discussing the finances of the states could be more user-friendly.
Interface Rating: 3 out of 5
Q: The text contains no grammatical errors
The text is free of grammatical or spelling errors.
Grammar Rating: 5 out of 5
Q: The text is not culturally insensitive or offensive in any way. It should make use of examples that are inclusive of a variety of races, ethnicities, and backgrounds
The text cites many examples from the US and some examples from outside. The language is courteous and without any prejudice towards any group.
Cultural Relevance Rating: 5 out of 5
Q: Are there any other comments you would like to make about this book, for example, its appropriateness in a Canadian context or specific updates you think need to be made?
Yes, I would recommend it to those students/professionals who would like to amalgamate understanding of Financial Accounting, Cost Accounting and Public Finance. The book covers the key concepts under each realm. However, it is not a complete book at all. It leaves out many key concepts related to Accounting and Finance. The book is a very good basic guide to many of the essential concepts.
All in all, it is a good book at the Beginner to Intermediate level.