Economics, Finance & Control Department
The department's teachers strive to link theory and practice by offering students an introduction to applied research in social sciences right at the beginning of their training. They use a number of examples and real-life business case studies on which to base their lessons. They also use active teaching methods which encourage greater participation from students.
One part of the Economics team focuses primarily on competition analysis and business strategy analysis (e.g. R&D agreements, timing of investments, partnership practices). Another part of the team focuses on economic climate analysis and macroeconomic monetary theory, combined with teaching and research activities relating to financial markets.
The team also focuses on the evolution of economic models, with institutional analysis of the diversity of capitalism on one hand and a human economics-led approach to ethical questions on the other. In particular, this includes analysis of new organisational structures in the voluntary sector and microfinance, and analysis of new forms of capitalism such as those seen in China and Brazil.
These research activities provide a basis for teaching material on degree and life-long learning programmes, as well as the Masters in International Business taught at Sun Yat-Sen University's Lingnan College in Canton, in association with Lyon 3 University.
Finance is centred upon two key areas: quantitative finance with a focus on risk management and corporate finance with a focus on entrepreneurial finance.
The department has its very own finance research centre (CEFRA) which is aiming to restructure the paradigms of finance following the pronounced financial imbalances of recent years. The centre's principal areas of research are:
- extreme risk management
- evaluation of derivatives
- the interface between economics and finance
- portfolio management
Our Finance team is also very business-orientated, with its corporate finance research structured around four areas:
- Entrepreneurial finance: the financing of business start-ups and the growth of SMEs
- Family capitalism: the conditions under which companies using the "family capitalism" model are able to grow
- Corporate governance: directors' pay, links with financial markets, effect on financing structures, M&A
- Financial literacy: research into people's financial behaviour
These research activities provide a basis for corporate finance teaching material, specifically in relation to business evaluation and business performance diagnosis.
The methodology for Financial Markets teaching is divided into three parts: Mathematics, IT and Economics/Finance. Teachers use these three approaches to focus on portfolio management, risk management, evaluating stock options and evaluating financial and insurance products. The team also focuses on the influence of financial markets on the real economy.
Based on these research activities, the Finance team offer two Specialised Masters programmes, one in Financial Engineering and the other in Financial Markets. The team is also involved in life-long learning programmes, particularly in the subject of optimal financial decision-making.
Accountancy - Management Control
In their teaching and research activities, the Accountancy team uses an approach to business performance evaluation, competition comparison and financial analysis that focuses on all business stakeholders, whether internal or external. It also focuses on the ethical aspects of the profession, the current climate whereby accountancy finds itself at the centre of economic and political debate, and gender issues.
The Management Control team's teaching activities are not focused exclusively on managing financial performance. The team's research activities, which focus on the sociological and psychological aspects of management practices and mechanisms, include non-financial factors, such as social, environmental and societal effects, with a strong emphasis on justice and corporate social responsibility (CSR). The team is also highly involved in life-long learning programmes, particularly in the subject of managing decentralised business units.
This team adopts a cross-disciplinary approach to their research work on IT systems, viewing them in terms of the service they provide to the different organisational functions of a business within an international, multi-cultural context. The team is also looking to reinforce the theoretical foundations of IT systems by bringing a socio-cultural approach to their research that sits outside of determinist viewpoints. Through its teaching activities, the team focuses on the principal management tools used in business, ERP tools, and tools linked to multiplatform mobile applications - developing understanding of how virtualisation is transforming the way people use IT systems and their expectations of them.
Consulting subjects are taught by our UPR. As a multidisciplinary unit, the UPR is best placed to manage our consulting programmes. It combines the three essential management disciplines (accountancy, auditing and finance) used by consultancy firms, as well as the study of economics and IT systems. Consulting is taught as part of the Masters in Management programme, as well as the Specialised Masters in Consulting, which is open to students from a wide variety of backgrounds.
The Operations Management team carries out research into value creation and management processes for goods manufacturing and service provision. As part of this they are examining, from an operations management perspective, some of the most important strategic, tactical and operational decisions that are made in business:
- choice of products and processes
- decisions relating to capacity
- organisation of labour
- choice of methods and layouts
- quality control
- production planning and stock control
- supply management
These research activities provide a basis for teaching subjects such as supply chain management, storage management and advanced pricing policies.