About Us

The SWIFT Institute is overseen by an independent advisory council that includes thought leaders from academia and finance. Although it is an essential part of SWIFT’s cooperative framework, the Institute’s day-to-day operations are independent.

The financial services industry has built a complex technical infrastructure, a wealth of data and a huge store of mature process, practice and experience. Yet the sheer pace of business change can make it difficult to recognise the lessons and harness the knowledge these resources can provide. The SWIFT Institute aims to change this by supporting independent, academic research into important topics affecting the industry and its customers world-wide.

The SWIFT Institute, set up by SWIFT, funds independent research, supports knowledge-led debate and provides a forum where academics and financial practitioners can learn from each other. The primary focus of the SWIFT Institute’s work is transaction banking, covering the areas of payments, clearing & settlement, cash management, trade finance and trust & securities.

There is often a gap between research programmes underway in academia and engagement with the financial industry . The vision for the SWIFT Institute is to bridge that gap. We want to build a body of research based on robust academic principles, which is accessible and relevant to the SWIFT community. And we want to encourage academic enquiry in our community and between our community and academia.

Yawar Shah, Chairman of the SWIFT Board and Managing Director, Citi,

The SWIFT Institute core objectives

  • Extend understanding of current practice and future needs in global financial services, with a particular focus on transaction banking.

  • Foster independent research by giving grants, access to research data and publication opportunities for approved projects.

  • Act as a catalyst for bringing the SWIFT community and academics together to explore ideas, share knowledge and extend mutual understanding.

Advisory Council

The SWIFT Institute is governed by an Advisory Council comprising leading academics and financial services industry professionals, with a demonstrable record of independent thinking.
The Council is balanced, including members from both academia and the financial services industry.

The Advisory Council provides guidance and approval on the topics to be researched, research proposals, and the resulting grants. It also gives feedback on the results of research carried out on behalf of the SWIFT Institute.

Head of the Oversight Department at De Nederlandsche Bank
Endowed Professor Financial Infrastructure & Systemic Risk at the University of Tilburg
Professor Dr. R.J. (Ron) Berndsen is Head of the Oversight Department of De Nederlandsche Bank and attached to the department of Economics at the University of Tilburg as an endowed professor of Financial Infrastructure and Systemic Risk. He is also a member of the Payment and Settlement Systems Committee of the European System of Central Banks and the cooperative oversight committees for CLS, Euroclear, LCH.Clearnet and SWIFT. He has worked for De Nederlandsche Bank since 1992, including in various management functions in the field of monetary and economic policy. He was awarded a doctorate with the Faculty of Economics and Business Administration of the University of Tilburg in 1992 for his thesis entitled ‘Knowledge representation and qualitative reasoning in economic models’.

Professor

R. J. (Ron) Berndsen

Head of the Oversight Department at De Nederlandsche Bank
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Dean of the Lerner College of Business and Economics at the University of DelawareBruce W. Weber is Dean of the Lerner College of Business and Economics at the University of Delaware, where he is a professor of business administration and an affiliated faculty member in the Institute for Financial Services Analytics. Previously, he was a professor of information management and area chair for Management Science & Operations at London Business School. Dr. Weber’s research on digital markets, financial sector computerization, and compliance systems has been published in leading academic journals and has been cited in the Wall Street Journal and the Financial Times. He is co-developer of the market structure simulation used in Nasdaq’s ‘HeadTrader’, and in TraderEx (www.etraderex.com), an educational market platform in use in leading business schools. His recent books, The Equity Trader Course (Wiley 2006) and Mastering the Art of Equity Trading Through Simulation (Wiley 2010), evaluate the economic advantages of digital markets, and highlight the new challenges facing securities traders, managers, and regulators.

Professor

Bruce Weber

Dean of the Lerner College of Business and Economics at the University of Delaware
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Chief Executive Officer, Euroclear UK & Ireland LtdJohn Trundle is Chief Executive Officer of Euroclear UK & Ireland and the former Chief Risk Officer of the Euroclear Group and Executive Director of Euroclear Bank SA/NV. He joined Euroclear in 2005 from the Bank of England where he was the Head of Oversight of Market Infrastructure and of the Business Continuity divisions and a former private secretary to the Governor. He began his career, after Cambridge University, as a monetary policy economist and also holds an MBA from the London Business School. He chaired the working group of the Basel Committee on Payment and Settlement Systems which produced the Core Principles for Systemically Important Payment Systems.

Professor

John Trundle

Chief Executive Officer, Euroclear UK & Ireland Ltd
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Chief Operating Officer, Customer Intelligence, Citi
Chairman of the Board of Directors, SWIFT
Yawar Shah has been a SWIFT Director since 1995, Deputy Chairman of the Board since 1996, and Chairman since June 2006. He is the Chief Operating Officer, Customer Intelligence, Citi and before that was the Global Head of Citi Shared Services. Prior to this, Mr Shah was at J.P. Morgan for more than 20 years. Positions there included: Global Operations Executive for Worldwide Securities Services, Retail Service and Operations Executive, Chief Operating Officer of the Global Private Bank, and General Manager of the Treasury Management Services business. He received his BA from Harvard College and his MBA from Harvard Business School.

Professor

Yawar Shah

Chief Operating Officer, Customer Intelligence, Citi Chairman of the Board of Directors, SWIFT
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Chief Executive Officer, SWIFTSucceeded Lázaro Campos as CEO of SWIFT in July 2012. Gottfried Leibbrandt joined SWIFT in 2005 to focus on the development of the SWIFT2010 strategy. Upon completion of the strategy, he was appointed as Head of Standards and then in 2007, was promoted to Head of Marketing. Prior to joining SWIFT, Gottfried worked for McKinsey & Company for 18 years where he was a partner in the Amsterdam office and a co-leader of the European payments practice. He holds a Masters degree in Econometrics and Statistics from the Vrije Universteit Amsterdam and a MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Gottfried also holds a PhD in Economics from Maastricht University. His thesis was “Payment instruments and network effects: Adoption, harmonization and succession of network technologies across countries”.

Professor

Gottfried Leibbrandt

Chief Executive Officer, SWIFT
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About SWIFT

SWIFT, the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunications, is a member-owned cooperative through which the financial world conducts its business operations. We provide our community with a platform for messaging, standards for communicating and we offer products and services to facilitate access and integration; identification, analysis and regulatory compliance.

Our messaging platform, products and services connect more than 11,000 banking and securities organisations, market infrastructures and corporate customers in more than 200 countries and territories. Whilst SWIFT does not hold funds or manage accounts on behalf of customers, we enable our global community of users to communicate securely, exchanging standardised financial messages in a reliable way, thereby facilitating global and local financial flows, and supporting trade and commerce all around the world.

Headquartered in Belgium, SWIFT’s international governance and oversight reinforces the neutral, global character of its cooperative structure. SWIFT’s global office network ensures an active presence in all the major financial centres.