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Since 2001, EDHEC Business School has been pursuing an ambitious policy in terms of practically relevant academic research. This policy, known as “Research for Business”, aims to make EDHEC an academic institution of reference for the industry in a small number of areas in which the school has reached critical mass in terms of expertise and research results. Among these areas, asset and risk management have occupied privileged positions, leading to the creation in 2001 of EDHEC-Risk Institute, which has developed an ambitious portfolio of research and educational initiatives in the domain of investment solutions for institutional and individual investors.
This institute now boasts a team of close to 50 permanent professors, engineers and support staff, as well as 34 research associates from the financial industry and affiliate professors. EDHEC-Risk Institute is located at campuses in Singapore, which was established at the invitation of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS); the City of London in the United Kingdom; Nice and Paris in France. The philosophy of the institute is to validate its work by publication in prestigious academic journals, but also to make it available to professionals and to participate in industry debate through its Position Papers, published studies and global conferences.
To ensure the distribution of its research to the industry, EDHEC-Risk also provides professionals with access to its website, www.edhec-risk.com, which is entirely devoted to international risk and asset management research. The website, which has more than 70,000 regular visitors, is aimed at professionals who wish to benefit from EDHEC-Risk’s analysis and expertise in the area of applied portfolio management research. Its quarterly newsletter is distributed to more than 1.5 million readers.
EDHEC-Risk Institute also has highly significant executive education activities for professionals. In partnership with CFA Institute, it has developed advanced seminars based on its research which are available to CFA charterholders and have been taking place since 2008 in New York, Singapore and London.
In 2012, EDHEC-Risk Institute signed two strategic partnership agreements, with the Operations Research and Financial Engineering department of Princeton University to set up a joint research programme in the area of asset-liability management for institutions and individuals, and with Yale School of Management to set up joint certified executive training courses in North America and Europe in the area of risk and investment management.
As part of its policy of transferring know-how to the industry, EDHEC-Risk Institute has set up ERI Scientific Beta. ERI Scientific Beta is an original initiative which aims to favour the adoption of the latest advances in smart beta design and implementation by the whole investment industry. Its academic origin provides the foundation for its strategy: offer, in the best economic conditions possible, the smart beta solutions that are most proven scientifically with full transparency of both the methods and the associated risks.
The centre currently has six research programmes:
The research carried out focuses on the benefits, risks and integration methods of the alternative class in asset allocation. From that perspective, Edhec is making a significant contribution to the research conducted in the area of multi-style/multi-class portfolio construction.
The scientific goal of the research is to adapt the portfolio performance and style analysis models and methods to tactical allocation. The results of the research carried out by EDHEC thereby allow portfolio alphas to be measured not only for stock picking but also for style timing.
Edhec carries out analyses of the quality of indices and the criteria for choosing indices for institutional investors. Edhec also proposes an original proprietary style index construction methodology for both the traditional and alternative universes. These indices are intended to be a response to the critiques relating to the lack of representativity of the style indices that are available on the market. Edhec was the first to launch composite hedge fund strategy indices as early as 2003.
Development of a complete framework for measuring transaction costs: EBEX (Estimated Best Execution); development of the existing framework for specific situations (constrained orders, listed derivatives, etc.); risk-adjusted performance measurement of execution strategies; analysis of market impact and opportunity costs on listed derivatives order books; impact of explicit and implicit transaction costs on portfolio performances; and the impact of market fragmentation resulting from MiFID on the quality of execution in European listed securities markets.
This research programme focuses on the usefulness of employing derivative instruments in the area of portfolio construction, whether it involves implementing active portfolio allocation or replicating indices. "Passive" replication of "active" hedge fund indices through portfolios of derivative instruments is a key area in the research carried out by EDHEC.
This programme concentrates on the application of recent research in the area of asset-liability management for pension plans and insurance companies. The research centre is working on the idea that improving asset management techniques and particularly strategic allocation techniques has a positive impact on the performance of Asset-Liability Management programmes. The programme includes research on the benefits of alternative investments, such as hedge funds, in long-term portfolio management. Particular attention is given to the institutional context of ALM and notably the integration of the impact of the IFRS standards and the Solvency II directive project.