The Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CCAF) is a multi-disciplinary research institute established within Cambridge Judge Business School, University of Cambridge.
The CCAF conducts research across four broad, yet interconnected, research streams:
- Online finance channels and instruments which include crowdfunding and peer-to-peer and marketplace lending
- Investment and credit analytics using new forms of data that can inform investment and credit decision-making
- Payment systems such as cryptocurrencies and distributed ledger technologies (e.g. blockchain)
- Regulation and policy in alternative finance (including regulatory technologies or RegTech)
The CCAF is an internationally renowned centre of excellence, noted for its pioneering research in alternative finance: its benchmarking and industry reports are widely recognised as the most reliable, independent and comprehensive sources of information and market data in crowdfunding, peer-to-peer lending and other forms of alternative finance.
Many of the questions that the CCAF is asking and exploring are broad and extend beyond the economic sector and financial innovation to encompass socio-technological and cultural-political aspects. They have implications not only for regional economic development, asset pricing, innovation, and corporate finance, but also for trust, reputation, and consumer behaviour.
Whether you are a third or fourth year undergraduate or nearing the completion of your PhD and have a passion for finance and how it is evolving, the CCAF is offering you the chance to work alongside leading experts to tackle some of these topical issues (online channels, credit analytics, payment systems, regulation and policy); facilitating successful candidates to make their own contribution to this exciting and dynamic industry.
The CCAF recruits the brightest student volunteers from across the globe to fulfil active and integral roles on various influential global research projects. The Centre regularly works in collaboration with pioneering companies and organisations such as CME Group Foundation, VISA Europe Collab, Financial Conduct Authority and the World Bank.
What does it involve?
Successful candidates do not need to be based in Cambridge – our global interns will be part of a dynamic team working remotely on-line along with other student volunteers and the Centre’s core research team to gain valuable industry experience and skills.
Each cohort lasts a minimum of three months to ensure that you experience the full cycle of a research project – from inception to completion. You will be working in an excellent and like-minded company.
Some examples of the work you may be involved with at the Centre include:
- engaging with alternative finance platforms
- primary data collection
- interpretation and graphical representation of primary data using Microsoft Excel
- designing marketing materials to educate target audiences about the Centre
- delivering presentations on topical alternative finance issues to the rest of your team
- researching fintech in different global regions and performing sizing and trend analysis
- researching market trends and the regulatory landscape of different countries.
The ideal candidate will be required to contribute between 10–15 hours a week to the Centre during term time, and 20–30 hours during summer/winter vacations, to ensure that they fully immerse themselves in the available research projects and reap the most that the programme has to offer in terms of experience, learning and skills.
What skills do I need?
To work with the CCAF team you will need strong experience of data analysis, data visualisation, market research, excellent communication skills and written English skills, proficiency in other languages an advantage, team work, legal and regulatory knowledge, economics and finance.
View student profiles from our 2016, 2017 and 2018 cohorts.
I had an amazing time working with the Centre and am grateful for the chance to interact with lead researchers. The internship helped me to understand the alternative finance industry to a much greater depth and increased my awareness of similar programs in my home country. Overall, it provided me with a stepping stone to further my knowledge of alternative finance and its interaction with MSMEs.