Karen McBride

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

I especially welcome enquires and applications from students wishing to study a PhD with me, researching in topics relating to my areas of research interest or other accounting topic areas.

Personal profile


I am an Associate Professor in Accounting and Accountability.

An enthusiastic researcher, I have a PhD and Masters' degree in Research Methods. Experienced in working independently and with an ability to meet deadlines.

My research interest in accounting and accountability encompasses differing areas, particularly corporate governance and accountability focusing on social and environmental accounting and the historical roots of environmental accounting. Equity, diversity and inclusion issues are also a focus.

I am involved in developing research in Accounting History, within Portsmouth, nationally and internationally. As Chair of the Accounting History Special Interest group (SIG) of the British Accounting and Finance Association (BAFA), my role involves organising conferences, workshops, meetings and the committee of this international group. Co-organised and led a series of monthly workshops in Accounting History from January 2021 to May 2021, these were so successful that the organisation of these continued into 2022 and 2023.

An active committee member of the interdiscipinary Heritage Hub at University of Portsmouth. Leader of training and workshops on the committee of the Accounting Education SIG of BAFA.

In 2020, I won funding from the Financial Reporting Council for a research project on the changes in directors remuneration after the new Corporate Governance Code 2018. This research was carried out by a team from the School of Business and Law and published in May 2021.

In 2019, I received funding from the British Council to run an emerging scholars workshop on sustainability and corporate reporting, with delegates from Russia and the UK. The workshop was successful and has resulted in research links and networking across Russia and the UK.

I am joint editor of a special edition of British Accounting Review (BAR) on 'Exploring Accounting History', with papers considering the history of accounting and its relevance to the present day. Also joint editor of a special issue of Accounting History.

Currently a joint editor on a special issue of Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal 'Exploring the Historical Roots of Environmental and Ecological Accounting, Auditing and Accountability' and for Meditari Accounting Research Accounting as technical, social and moral practice for shaping a better world.

Publications in the area of Enforcement of Accounting Standards for Financial Reporting were joint work, one paper of which I was a main author, won a best paper prize from BAR journal. The work supported by a grant from the ICAEW, resulted in a monograph for the Institute with impact and changes in accounting regulation and enforcement.

In September 2022, I was convenor of the 11th Accounting History International Conference (11AHIC), held at Portsmouth, the first time this pretigious conference has been held in the UK, since its inception over twenty years ago.


Before becoming an academic I trained to be a chartered accountant with a medium sized firm in Southampton.  I became a tax manager and subsequently a senior audit manager at another larger firm locally.

I am a researcher and have presented papers at numerous research conferences both in the UK and overseas.

I also try to remain engaged with the accountancy profession. My research has involved interviews with senior people in the profession and this along with other research projects has helped me to keep up to date with current developments and issues.

Until REF2021, I had an impact support role for the School of Business and Law.

Research Interests

My main research interests are in the broad subjects of accounting and accountability, I am enthusiastic about accounting history and accounting in history. Researching mainly in the area of corporate governance and accountability with a focus on social and environmental accounting and the historical roots of environmental accounting. 

Research interests include:

  • Accounting History
  • Corporate Governance
  • Environmental, Ecological and Corporate Social Responsibility reporting
  • Equity, Diversity and Inclusion
  • Accounting, Auditing and Big Data

Teaching Responsibilities

I am passionate about accounting education, and am on the committee for the Accounting Education, Special Interest Group of the British Accounting and Finance Association, with responsibility for training and workshops.

I teach Corporate Governance and Ethics, Fraud Examination and Forensic Investigations and Valuations and the Expert Report to Masters students. With Financial Accounting and International Accounting at final year of undergraduate level.

I also deliver research training sessions for students engaged in projects, dissertations and doctorates at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. Regularly hosting writing retreats for the Business School, for the Accounting Education SIG of BAFA and for other associations.

Aiming to inspire curiosity and knowledge.

Media Availability

I am happy to take calls and emails from the media on my research, and am aware of the need to respond in a timely manner. Please contact me directly at karen.mcbride@port.ac.uk.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

External positions

External examiner, Cranfield University


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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