On the 18th November 2019, the Award Ceremony of the 7th edition of the Global Prize “Ethics & Trust in Finance” took place, at the OECD headquarters in Paris.
See the full video of the Event here:
Mr. Paul H. Dembinski, co-President of the Jury of the Prize, opened the Ceremony welcoming the laureates, the members of the Jury and the keynote speakers.
Round-table discussion – Moderator: Josina Kamerling
The opening speech was followed by a round table, moderated by Ms. Josina Kamerling, Head of Regulatory Outreach at CFA Institute and Co-President of the Jury of the Prize, to discuss the theme “Ethics & Trust in finance: opportunities and challenges for 2020”. The participants to the round table included:
- Mathilde Mesnard, Deputy Director, Financial and Enterprise Affairs, OECD
There is a lot to do at the compliance level, in terms of enforcement and implementation. Supervisors and internal auditors face numerous challenges. At the cultural level, it is important to hire and cultivate people courageous enough to speak up. To allow these people to have an impact, it is very important to have a whistleblower protection system. Moreover, sustainable finance should be encouraged because it’s a positive agenda, especially for the young generations. It’s important to understand how finance can impact the world in terms environment and inclusiveness.
- Adam McLean, Legal and Financial Compliance, Euroclear
There are ethical issues arising from the use of Fintech and artificial intelligence. Data is a big point for Fintechs because they do not have necessarily the compliance mindset. For example, they are not aware that they must have a money laundering reporting officer or a data protection officer. More generally, it is important to reinforce awareness of the ethical issues across all employees, to ensure effective communication to make people feel that they can talk freely and to improve regulations, not necessarily with more regulations, but with more participation and dialogue.
- Pascal Cescon, Chief Ethics Officer, Banque de France
The top-down path is not the right path to strengthen ethics in a company. You must speak to the people at the bottom of the organization as well as to the leaders. Inclusiveness is very important and powerful to make people feel involved. Everybody should be competent in ethics and training courses should be provided at all levels. In addition, ethics officers must be involved in all projects and decisions because you don’t know if ethics is involved if you don’t have an ethics officer. Independence is also key: ethics officers should not fear retaliation from the CEO or HR when they give advice to a department. They should not depend on an internal audit but on an external audit.
- Eelco Fiole, Managing partner, Alpha Governance Partners
In finance, people are not trained in ethics. Recruiters are focusing on the experience and the educational background. But what is missing is the evidence that someone is versed into ethical decision-making. There is a need for an “enlightened leadership”: leaders who not only have the adequate experience but also evidenced skills in ethical decision-making. In addition, it is important to strengthen the enforcement of ethics and to move to a positive agenda for finance, one which can support the sustainable development goals.
The Award part of the Ceremony
The 7th edition 2018-2019 attracted more than 500 expressions of interest. In the final phase of its work, the Jury composed of 25 world class personalities, worked on a short list of 11 papers, and allocated the 20 000 USD to authors of the following four essays.
First ex aequo Prizes
Technomoral Financial Agents: Ethics in the Fintech Era
Marta Rocchi, Italy
Finance Needs ‘Bilinguals’ Too
Andrea Roncella & Luca Roncella, Italy
How to Shape Moral Attitudes in Banking – the Polish example
Mateusz Kucz, Poland
Special Commendation of the Jury:
The Moralisation of Contracts: An Islamic Persperctive
Andrea Bancone, Italy
Keynote speech, by Angel Gurría, Secretary-General of the OECD
The Secretary General of the OECD congratulated the Prize winners for “their ground-breaking work, their efforts in promoting ethics, responsibility and trust in the world of finance”. He stressed the cruciality of public trust in the financial sector for market economies and social progress, while recalling the low level of trust in financial institutions ten years after the crisis and despite significant reforms. “Promoting ethics and trust in finance is at the heart of the OECD work”, said the Secretary General who listed several initiatives of the organisation aimed at reinforcing confidence in finance and the economy. These initiatives testify to the convergence between the efforts of the Prize and those of the OECD which, in the last ten years, has addressed issues such as corporate governance, corruption, tax and profit shifting, transparency and culture of financial institutions.
The Strategic Partners of the Ethics & Trust in Finance Prize