Dr Antonio Malfense Fierro

Dr Antonio Malfense Fierro

Senior Lecturer in Entrepreneurship and Innovation (Programme Leader for BA Business Management with Entrepreneurship (2018 onwards). Knowledge Exchange lead for Hull University Business School 2021 onwards

Faculty and Department

  • Faculty of Business, Law and Politics
  • Hull University Business School


  • PhD (University of Edinburgh)
  • MA (University of Edinburgh)
  • MSc (University of Edinburgh)


Dr Antonio Malfense Fierro was selected as one of the 100 global ‘Young Leaders of Tomorrow' at the St Gallen Symposium, Switzerland in 2010.

He became the first Chazen Visiting Scholar at the Eugene Lang Entrepreneurship Centre at Columbia Business School in New York in 2010-2011.

In 2013, he was a visiting researcher at Makerere University Business School in Uganda and joined the Hull University Business School in the same year.

Dr Malfense Fierro's commentary and insight pieces on African entrepreneurship have been published in the Conversation, CNN Edition and World Economic Forum (amongst others).

He won the Hull university student union inspiring teaching award in 2017. He has been nominated in 2018 for best module (Starting a new business). In 2019 for Innovative Teaching and Admin and Support awards. In 2020 and 2021 the awards and nominations were not run. In 2022 nominated in the inspired in Hull awards 2022 in three categories: External Community Engagement category; Scholarship of Teaching and Learning and Innovation and Impact

In 2018 he was shortlisted for excellence in teaching in the Employee Excellence Awards.

At Hull University Business School, Antonio was the sole Lead of the school's Small Business Charter Application (2020-21), where Hull were awarded a five year accreditation at first attempt (Dec21).

Programme Director BA Business Management with Entrepreneurship 2018-present

Programme Director MSc Marketing and Advertising 2020-1

Programme Director MSc Marketing Management 2020-1

Academic lead and Advisor, for Hull University Dare to Be Social Enterprise Project

First Academic lead and Advisor, for Hull University Enactus Society 2018-21

Current Teaching

Assessing entrepreneurial Opportunities

Creating the New Venture

Undergraduate and Postgraduate Dissertation (including MBA & PhD) Supervision

Recent outputs

View more outputs

Book Chapter

Resilience and family business groups in unstable economies

Discua Cruz, A., Malfense Fierro, A., Basca, R., Parada, M. J., & Alvarado-Alvarez, C. (2019). Resilience and family business groups in unstable economies. In M. Rautiainen, P. Rosa, T. Pihkala, M. Parada, & A. Cruz (Eds.), The family business group phenomenon: Emergence and complexities (315-352). Palgrave Macmillan

Digital Artefact

Journal Article

African portfolio entrepreneurship and the creation of jobs

Malfense Fierro, A. C., Noble, D., Hatem, O., & Balunywa, W. (2018). African portfolio entrepreneurship and the creation of jobs. Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, 25(5), 730 - 751. https://doi.org/10.1108/jsbed-02-2017-0074

Research interests

African business and entrepreneurship

Portfolio entrepreneurship

Entrepreneurship in developing counties

The value chain and enterprising activity

Knowledge Exchange in Higher Education Contexts

Market Opportunity assessment

Market Feasibility Studies

Business Models/ Business Model innovation

The relationship between risk and entrepreneurship

Educational Technology

Start-ups and Venture Capital

Prototyping and design thinking

Entrepreneurship Pedagogy

New Market Entry

Competitive Analysis

Consultancy and Industry projects in higher education contexts

Applied research and collaboration between universities and public/private sector


2022 amount awarded £12,436.26 (Feb &March 22)- Principle Investigator QR Policy Support Fund: Understanding the long-lasting Impact of Covid-19 on SMEs and Micro Businesses in Hull’s non, city centre locations

2021 amount awarded £39,747.72 (Jan- July 21)- Principle Investigator TPF-CV 19: Developing a Post-Covid 19 recovery framework for Tanzania’s Tourism sector. Funder: GCRF Fund 2020-1 link: https://www.hull.ac.uk/work-with-us/research/case-studies/supporting-post-covid-19-recovery-in-tanzania

2021 amount awarded £23,000 (Jan-July 21)- Co- Investigator Assessment of the potential of geothermal energy to enhance economic development, health and well-being in Malawi. Funder GCRF Fund 2020-1

2019-20 amount awarded circa 52k (Co-investigator) Lobster Marketing phase 2-'Supporting the future of the Lobster Trade and Tourism in the Holderness Coast' Funder: European Maritime Fisheries Fund, Marine Maritime Organisation and Holderness Flag

2017-2019 amount awarded: circa 93k (Co-investigator) Lobster Marketing phase 1- Sustaining & Growing the lobster trade for Holderness coast fishermen’ Funder: European Maritime Fisheries Fund, Marine Maritime Organisation and Holderness Flag


Sep 2021 - Present- Understanding the long-lasting Impact of Covid 19 on Small and Micro Businesses in Hull’s non, city centre locations

Jun 2021 - Aug 2021- An Assessment of the John Cracknell Youth Enterprise Bank: Benefits and suggested future actions An

Oct 2020 - Jun 2021- Covid 19’s impact on Hull and the surrounding areas High growth firms: insights for best practice


Sep 2021 - February 2022- In-depth market feasibility and assessment for a proposed innovative agricultural waste slurry product.

2021 (April-May) Academic Lead (Work package 4)- Developing Low Carbon Agriculture in the Humber Region: A Case Study of Black Grass (value circa 6k)

2021 (Feb-April) Academic Lead- Entrepreneurship in the Humber a Gap Analysis (value circa 10k)

2020 (August-December) Academic Lead- Global market trends and analysis of Carbon Nanofiber 2016-24 (value circa 11k). Project link: https://aura-innovation.co.uk/osl-consulting-engineers/

2020 (March - August) Academic Lead - Vehicle to Grid (V2G): UK Market Insights on Electric Vehicle Charging Industry (value circa 10k)

2016- Work (gratis) with grow movement in Lilongwe Malawi measuring the economic success of their membership programme for SMEs within Lilongwe.

Postgraduate supervision

Dr Malfense Fierro is interested in supervising Masters students, and hearing from potential PhD candidates that are desirous of doing novel research in his main areas of interest (Please see research interests section).

These primarily include (but are not limited to) African large scale entrepreneurship and business, portfolio entrepreneurship, entrepreneurship in challenging environments, as well as entrepreneurship topics generally (in any country) and in developing contexts.

Further interest include applied research involving SMEs large organisations.

Completed PhDs

- Dr. Mato Magobe (as first supervisor)

- Dr. Ontida Chanuban (as first supervisor)

- Dr. Priscilla Otuo (as joint first supervisor)

- Dr. Abdullah F Al Mulhim (as second supervisor)

- Dr. Peter Djabang (as second supervisor)

- Dr. Asiamah Yeboah (as second supervisor)

Current PhD supervisions (1st Supervisor)

- Mr Ze Qian, first supervisor (Submitted Awaiting Viva)

Awards and prizes

Multiple Nominations in the Inspired in Hull Awards 2022


Nominated in three categories: External Community Engagement category; Scholarship of Teaching and Learning and Innovation and Impact

Winner in the Inspired in Hull Awards for the most outstanding contribution contribution to developing the scholarship of Learning and Teaching


'The outstanding contribution to developing the scholarship of learning and teaching award, recognizes and celebrates the outstanding performance of individuals or teams through teaching or research-related scholarship. These contributions help the University of Hull to achieve our aspiration to be gold in the next TEF and help us to work towards our goal of achieving a Top 50 Research Profile in the 2021 REF'. In particular, this award reflects my achievements in building entrepreneurship as a subject area at Hull University Business School over the past nine years and in particular my leading of the school's awarding of a five year accreditation for the Small Business Charter (Dec21/Feb22). The award further highlights the numerous innovations implemented on the BA business management with entrepreneurship degree at Hull university Business School. Of note is the involvement of many UG, PG and graduate, entrepreneurship students in applied research projects with SMEs and organisations focused on supporting entrepreneurship in the local economy.

Multiple Nominations in the Innovative teaching award for the Student-led teaching awards


Nominated for admin and support award at the student led teaching awards


Shortlisted for Empoloyee Excellence Awards- Excellence in Teaching


Nominated for Best Module (Starting a new Business) in the Student-led teaching awards


Winner of the Inspiring Teaching Award in the Student-led teaching awards


Committee/Steering group role

Board Member, of the Business Support Board of the Hull and East Yorkshire Local Economic Partnership (HEY LEP)


The business support board supports the HEY LEP main board, in its vital work in developing and delivering Hull and East Yorkshire’s economic strategy. The business support board plays an important role in the implementation and delivery of the various regional economic strategies and funding programmes, focused on business support in Hull and East Yorkshire. These business support focused funding programmes will aim to transform the Hull and East Yorkshire region over the next five to ten years.

Board Member- Local Advisory Board, Sirius Academy West


Community representatives have a vital role to play in the improvement of children’s education. The advisory board members aim to make a positive difference to both school standards and professional development at Sirius Academy West. My role is to focus on learning and teaching bringing my experience from higher education to bear in assessing/providing comment to current teaching practice and outcomes.

Conference organisation

London School of Economics Africa Summit- Academic Advisory Panel Member


Journal peer reviewer

Ad Hoc reviewer for ESRC, USASBE, Journal of Small Business and Enterprise development and Africa Journal of Management


Membership/Fellowship of professional body

Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy


Fellow of the Higher Education Academy