European Banking Center

Research European Banking Center (EBC)

The EBC is dedicated to stimulating and disseminating banking research, with three essential areas of expertise: central banking and financial supervision, European banking and regulation, and international banking and finance.

Research is centered where (elements of) the three research areas overlap. For example, the sub-prime crisis originated from activities that banks spun off to the capital markets and where the capital market players (other banks, hedge funds, private equity) are struggling the asset pricing and proper risk management of these activities. Research that crosses these types of borders is well positioned to create new insights, stimulating academic rigor as well as relevance in the public debate.

Central Banking, Financial Regulation and Supervision

Central Banking, Financial Regulation and Supervision comprises research in the areas of central banking and monetary and exchange rate policy, as well as bank regulation and supervision.

The current crisis has brought these issues again to the forefront, including (i) the debate on the role of central banks beyond lender of last resort to being market-maker of last resort, (ii) the discussion on the optimal regulatory structure for Europe's banking system, (iii) issues of consumer protection and financial literacy that might have contributed to over-indebtedness of many households especially in the U.S., but also in some European countries, and finally (iv) exchange rate issues, as the comparison of crisis resolution in Euro and non-Euro (e.g. UK and Denmark) has shown.

Banking and Corporate Finance

Banking and Corporate Finance covers research in the areas of finance and economic growth, firm financing, corporate governance, law and finance, and banking market structure.

The research program is specifically designed to reflect the combination of fundamental research and relevance in the public debate. While focusing on banking, other financial institutions, such as insurance companies, mutual and pension funds as well as financial markets will also be part of this research program.

International Banking and Finance

International Banking and Finance includes research in the areas of globalization of finance (capital account liberalization and foreign bank entry) as well as research directly related to developing and emerging markets (e.g. access to financial services).

The current crisis has shown the benefits but also pitfalls of financial internationalization, with the crisis spreading first through the developed world and then affecting many emerging markets. In spite of being shielded from direct impact of the crisis, many countries that still have a closed financial system, however, lose out on the many benefits that have been documented for financial globalization.