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Hugh Harley

Hugh Harley

BEc LLB Sydney; MPhil Cambridge
Adjunct Professor
Financial Services Leader, Australia


  • Life Member, Clare Hall, University of Cambridge
  • Senior Fellow, Financial Services Institute of Australasia (FINSIA)
  • Member, FINSIA Policy Advisory Committee

Hugh Harley is the Financial Services Leader, Australia for PwC and is responsible for the firm's activities in the financial services industry within Australia. He advises several Australian financial institutions on a wide range of issues. Hugh is a member of PwC Australia's Leadership Council as well as a member of PwC's Global Financial Services Leadership Team.

Hugh has over 25 years of banking experience, having held group executive roles at the Commonwealth Bank of Australia and non-executive director roles in other Australian and NZ banks. As such he brings deep experience of the practical and technical operations of complex financial institutions, together with a strategic perspective on market trends and developments. His career at CBA spanned all major areas of the bank's domestic operations, culminating in the roles of Group Executive Retail Banking from 2002 to 2006, and Group Executive Group Strategic Development from 2006 to 2007.

In addition to his experience at CBA and PwC, Hugh served as Director and Chairman of the Audit Committee at ING Bank (Australia) Ltd from 2007 to 2010 and as Director of ASB Bank (NZ) from 2000 to 2001. He was an advisor to Korn/Ferry Australia in 2008. From 1991 to 1995, he served as Treasurer of the Economic Society of Australia (NSW Branch) and was the Joint Editor of the society's policy journal, Economic Papers from 1992 to 1995.

Hugh has an MPhil in Economics (with distinction) from the University of Cambridge and has long had a close relationship with the University of Sydney. He graduated with honours degrees in Economics and Law, and tutored half-time in Economics from 1984 to 1986 at the University while completing his law degree. His grandmother, father and wife are also alumni and both of his sons are currently enrolled as undergraduates at the University - the eldest is in the third year of his Science degree and the youngest has just commenced a combined Arts and Social Work degree. He received the inaugural ENI Enrico Mattei Scholarship to study at Cambridge in 1986 and the Dawson Waldron Prize for First in Taxation Law in 1985. Hugh has also been lecturing and assisting in thesis supervision in the Master of Sustainability program from 2011.

His research interests include banking, insurance and capital markets; the link between energy and economic growth; and soil, agriculture, and climate change adaption. He and his wife are farmers and food entrepreneurs.