European University Cyprus’ School of Business Administration and the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CCAF) based at the Cambridge Judge Business School have announced the signing of a research collaboration agreement to accelerate tech-enabled financial innovation and knowledge sharing in the Middle East, North Africa and Mediterranean region.
In particular, European University Cyprus will work with the CCAF to strengthen financial markets and promote financial inclusion across the Middle East, North Africa and the Mediterranean.
The agreement will see a dedicated team recruited to facilitate collaborative research under three highly integrated pillars to contribute to the creation and transfer of FinTech and digital financial services (DFS) related knowledge.
Under the pillars, the CCAF and EUC will undertake deep-dive market and regulatory research programmes in the region – the results of which will be used to assist in the development of digital tools that will inform both regulatory and market decision-making. In addition, the CCAF and EUC will create and deliver capacity-building and education programmes for regulators and policymakers that are data-driven and evidence-based. This will include activities ranging from online programmes to offline, in-situ training in the region.
“By working closely with leading experts in the field in Cyprus, the UK and beyond, and by engaging with institutional and corporate stakeholders as well as academics, we believe this agreement will generate new thinking and offer a better understanding of a global shift that is already having strong implications for regional economic development and corporate finance,” says Dr Christoforos Hadjikyprianou, President of the Council of European University Cyprus.
“With a burgeoning FinTech sector and strong government leadership in the area of innovation, we believe that Cyprus will be an important strategic link between the Mediterranean and the MENA regions, complementing our existing collaboration with the Abu Dhabi Global Market Academy in particular,” says Dr Robert Wardrop, Director and Co-Founder of the CCAF. “Given the EUC’s credentials for technology-driven academic and research programmes, plus its strong links to firms, regulators and policymakers in the financial sector, we are delighted to be working together to further the impact of FinTech in the region.”
Professor Kostas Gouliamos, Rector of the EUC, emphasises the importance of such collaboration: “By collaborating with partners such as the CCAF, we can continue to provide government, society and business, with innovative solutions to challenges, as well as creating and sharing new knowledge. Our societies will benefit significantly under the current turbulence and challenging environment”.
As an interdisciplinary academic research institute at the University of Cambridge, the CCAF is dedicated to the study of alternative finance including new technology-enabled financial instruments, channels, and systems that extend beyond the traditional financial system. It conducts cutting-edge, interdisciplinary, rigorous and critical research in the field and aims to have high impact not only on academic thought leadership, but also on policy decision-making and business practice globally.
In that vein, European University Cyprus’ Ioannis Gregoriou School of Business Administration with its broad industry reach and high-level research will help raise awareness about the CCAF’s work and the growing sector of alternative finance and its emerging new tools.