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Based at Cambridge Judge Business School, the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance is governed by a Managing Board and consists of the following individuals:

Robert Wardrop.

Robert (Bob) Wardrop

Co-founder and Director, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance 

Read more about Bob

Bob is an economic sociologist interested in understanding how and why channels and instruments of finance emerge outside the traditional financial system and how this impacts regulators, incumbent financial institutions and consumers. In addition to his role in the School, Bob is a member of the Steering Committee for the Cambridge Centre for Data-Driven Discovery (C2D3), an interdisciplinary research centre at Cambridge bringing together expertise from across academic departments and industry to drive research into the analysis, understanding, and use of big data. 

Prior to pursuing his academic career in 2010, Bob had an international career as a professional investor, most recently as a Managing Director in the investment group of one of the largest privately-owned companies in the United States where he was responsible for a portfolio of European corporate debt and equity investments. He has held several board directorships and advisory roles with academic, governmental and commercial organisations over the course of both his academic and non-academic career.

Visit Dr Robert Wardrop’s faculty webpage

Bryan Zhang

Bryan Zhang

Co-founder and Executive Director, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Bryan

Bryan is trained in economic geography and public policy. His research examines the accumulation and allocation of capital for start-ups and SMEs through alternative circuits of finance in a geographical and comparative context. Since 2013, Bryan has led and co-authored some of the most influential industry reports on the state of alternative finance both at national and international levels. He has advised and collaborated with numerous institutions and organisations including the Financial Conduct Authority, the British Business Bank, the Department of International Development, the European Commission, the World Bank, Oxfam and Unilever. Bryan is also a Senior Fellow at the Financial Innovation Lab.

Raghavendra Rau

Raghavendra Rau

Co-founder and Academic Director, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Raghu

Raghu is currently the Sir Evelyn de Rothschild Professor of Finance at Cambridge Judge Business School. A past president of the European Finance Association, Raghu is Co-Editor of Financial Management and an Associate Editor of the Journal of Banking and Finance, the International Review of Finance and the Quarterly Journal of Finance.

Visit Professor Raghavendra Rau’s faculty webpage

Yvona Duncan.

Yvona Duncan

Centre Manager, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Yvona

Yvona’s role focuses on managing the day-to-day operation matters of the Centre. She brings a wealth of experience in project and process management as well as economic and sustainable development. Her professional career prior to joining the Centre included running her own business, managing projects in cyber security, sustainable leadership and business support. She holds a masters degree in Economics from the Technical University of Ostrava and a masters degree in Sustainable Development from the University of Exeter.

Tania Ziegler

Tania Ziegler

Lead in Global Benchmarking, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Tania

Tania is a Lead in Global Benchmarking at the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CCAF), Cambridge Judge Business School, University of Cambridge. Tania’s research interests include small business economics and SME utilisation of alternative funding models to access finance. She was the Programme Manager of the Alternative Funding Network at the London-based Knowledge Peers. Previous to her work in alternative finance, Tania specialised in Chinese outward direct investment and was a Fulbright Scholar. Tania studied economics and holds an MSc in China in Comparative Perspective from the London School of Economics.

Philip Rowan.

Philip Rowan

Research Associate, Regulatory Innovation Lead, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Philip

Philip leads on the international aspects of CCAF’s financial innovation and financial inclusion initiatives. Philip was previously a regulator specialising in FinTech, competition policy and financial inclusion, focusing on enabling supportive regulatory environments for development. In his capacity as the International Lead at the UK Financial Conduct Authority’s Innovate initiative, he closely supported dozens of financial services regulators and governments in their efforts to promote innovation in financial services, including those in developing markets. A leading authority on regulatory sandboxes, Philip is regularly consulted by those seeking to promote innovation in regulation. During his time at CGAP Philip successfully advocated for the implementation of pro-innovation and pro-competition regulatory policies with regulators and competition authorities to promote financial inclusion. Philip has also served at the UK’s competition authority, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), where his work focused on improving competition in banking. Philip holds an MSc in Development Economics from the University of Oxford and a BSc in Economics from the University of Warwick.

Apolline Blandin

Apolline Blandin

Research Associate, Lead in Cryptocurrency & Blockchain, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Apolline

Apolline leads the Centre’s cryptoasset research programme. She has co-authored two influential benchmarking reports on the state of global cryptoasset and blockchain industries, as well as a study on the cryptoasset regulatory landscape. Her research interests primarily lie in the study of the cryptocurrency mining industry.  She holds a bachelor’s degree in International History from the University of Paris Denis Diderot and graduated from Peking University and the London School of Economics with a dual master’s degree in International Affairs.

Emmanuel Schizas

Emmanuel (Manos) Schizas

Research Associate, Lead in Regulation and RegTech, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Manos

Manos leads the CCAF’s thought leadership and applied research programmes related to RegTech – the application of technology to the task of improving regulatory compliance and supervision.

Prior to joining the Centre, Manos worked for a leading London-based RegTech startup. He was previously a regulator with the UK’s FCA, leading at working level the post-implementation review of crowdfunding regulation and the development of the FCA’s approach to small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs). 

Manos holds an MSc in Accounting and Finance from the LSE, as well as an MSc in Human Resource Management and BA in Economics from the Athens School of Economics and Business.

Chris Charlton.

Chris Charlton

Tech lead, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Chris

Chris is a machine learning engineer and consultant specialising in natural language processing and information retrieval.

He has worked in a number of startups including SwiftKey (acquired by Microsoft) and Grapeshot (acquired by Oracle).

At the CCAF, he leads the software team developing RegSimple (a regulatory intelligence platform) and is helping to improve the management of the Centre’s data. He also contributes to the FinTech & Regulatory Innovation programme. Chris is a Chartered Engineer with a BA in Computer Science and a PhD from the Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge.

Dee Allen.

Dee Allen

Lead in Education and Capacity Building, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Dee

Dee has expertise in the strategic leadership, management, delivery and impact evaluation of higher education degrees, executive education programmes and research projects in the UK, Asia and Africa. She also has experience in delivering lectures, seminars, workshops, webinars, online programmes and conducting academic research as a senior academic, L&D specialist, social entrepreneur and former lawyer. Dee holds an LLM in International Law from SOAS, University of London which included studying Law of International Finance and International Economic Law at King’s College and London School of Economics respectively as an inter-collegiate student of the University of London.

Dee’s PhD research focused on SME entrepreneurship and organisational behaviour using as a case study, a multinational social impact FinTech. Dee is also a Chartered Fellow of the CIPD and Fellow of the Higher Education Authority.

David Kruijff.

David Kruijff

Co-Lead of the Cambridge Alternative Finance Collaboration Network, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about David

David has over 20 years of experience in the MSME sector working for several of the industry’s most respected players like ProCredit, the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and OXFAM. He has also been a Director at First Access, a FinTech that digitises MFI operations and provides machine learning credit scoring algorithms. David held several Board positions on regulated MSME banks in Africa and one Serbian Bank.

Currently David is Chairman of Musoni Holding, a FinTech investment holding, and represents them on the Board of Musoni Kenya. Further, David is on the Supervisory Board of a Ugandan FinTech that digitises smallholders and a member of the Credit Committee of an Agricultural Supply Chain Fund (Agrif). David joined the CCAF in November 2019 to co-lead the establishment of the Cambridge Alternative Finance Collaboration Network (CAFCN).

Tom Ellum.

Tom Ellum

Co-Lead of the Cambridge Alternative Finance Collaboration Network, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Tom

Tom co-leads the global expansion of the Cambridge Alternative Finance Collaboration Network, with a focus on MENA and APAC. He oversees the development of strategic partnerships and collaborations to expand the CCAF’s work, as well as managing the CAFCN’s regional collaboration teams.

In the past Tom has specialised in commercial strategy, global expansion and partnerships in both technology and global health. He holds an Executive MBA from Cambridge Judge Business School and a MSc from the University of Bath.

Anton Dek.

Anton Dek

Research Associate, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Anton

Anton leads on the CCAF’s digital tools development, in particular, the Global Alternative Finance Benchmark Dashboard. Anton’s research interests include the cryptoassets market and its behavioural aspects. Anton is the co-author of the Cambridge Bitcoin Electricity Consumption Index, the real-time estimate of the total electricity load and consumption of the Bitcoin network. Before joining the CCAF, Anton was doing PhD research on the cryptocurrency market agents’ behaviour modelling, teaching Data Science at the Karazin Kharkiv National University and the University of Barcelona. He also worked at, and then managed, an analytics company where he mastered the software development cycle and came across Bitcoin while working on its price modelling. 

Prior to his work with cryptoassets, Anton specialised in renewable energy and worked as a Research Fellow at the Kharkiv Institute of Physics and Technology where he conducted nuclear safety tests. Anton holds an MSc in Applied Physics and an MSc in Applied Economics from the Karazin Kharkiv National University.

Rui Hao

Rui Hao

Research Associate Data Scientist, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Rui

Dr Rui Hao focuses on the projects of big data analysis, machine learning in natural language processing, relational database design, statistical modelling, and web development in the Centre. She has a PhD from the Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge, and obtained BEng Honours first class degree from the University of Nottingham. Before joining the CCAF, she interned and worked with various industries, including high-tech companies, consultancy, financial institutes, start-ups, NGO and academia. She has recently achieved qualifications as Chartered Financial Analyst and a Certificate in Quantitative Finance.

Grigory Mckain.

Grigory Mckain

Research Associate, Capacity Building & Education, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Grigory

Grigory is a researcher at the CCAF and a tutor in its FinTech and Regulatory Innovation programme. Before joining the CCAF he worked as the lead compliance consultant to GetChip and completed the Barclays & Techstars accelerator programme with Homeppl. He has previously worked and interned in the legal and research sectors in China and Central Asia and received an honours degree in law from the University of Edinburgh, specialising in international law.

Kate Belger

Kate Belger

Administrator, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Kate

Kate is Administrator for the CCAF team. She has wide experience of administrative practice across the University of Cambridge. She has worked for the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, Faculty of Mathematics, as senior secretary supporting a team of academics and researchers. Her College work includes administrative roles in the Mistress’ office at Girton College, and the Development Offices of Girton and Murray Edwards College.

Neil Jessiman.

Neil Jessiman

Communications Officer, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Neil

Neil’s background is in communications, marketing, public relations, media relations, analyst relations and brand management. He has worked agency side and in-house in the mobile communications, IT, enterprise communications, leisure and defence communications sectors. He is responsible for promoting the Centre’s research agenda, managing its social media profile, developing digital content and maintaining relationships with key media.

Sara Coupe.

Sara Coupe

Internship Programme Coordinator, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Sara

Sara joined the CCAF to coordinate the Catalyst Fund Inclusive FinTech Internship Programme, a collaborative project between the CCAF and the Catalyst Fund. Sara’s work involves recruiting, onboarding, training and supporting interns on the CF programme. Sara’s background is in HR and she is a member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. Prior to joining the CCAF, Sara ran her own HR consultancy business working with SMEs for five years and also taught on an MBA programme for the Open University Business School. Sara studied history at York University and this continues to be a great interest. Sara previously lived in the US and was a walking tour guide in Boston.

Patrick Conteh.

Patrick Saidu Conteh

SSA Regional Lead, Cambridge Alternative Finance Collaboration Network, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Patrick

Patrick Saidu Conteh is a banking and finance executive with over 20 years experience covering both the private and public sectors. He is the recent past Governor of the Central Bank of Sierra Leone; where amongst other FinTech initiatives, he pioneered Sierra Leone’s first sandbox, as part of an overarching financial inclusion strategy. He is also credited for championing regulatory reforms covering both the Central Bank itself and the banking industry. Patrick is a strong advocate of FinTech and other disruptive solutions as platforms for leapfrogging the low financial inclusion rate in the West Africa region. In 2016-17, Patrick was Fiscal Affairs Minister of State in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development of Sierra Leone; and between 2016-18, he doubled as Alternate Executive Director at the African Development Bank.

Patrick’s earlier career was in commercial banking, working for the Sierra Leone Commercial Bank Limited; where he held various senior management roles including that of the Director of Risk Management and, later, Deputy Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer. He has intricate knowledge of the wider financial systems and holds a PhD, MBA, and is a Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants of the United Kingdom.

Sarah Ombija.

Sarah Ombija

SSA Regulatory Researcher, Cambridge Alternative Finance Collaboration Network, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Sarah

Sarah is a lawyer and researcher. Her work focuses on financial services law and regulation. She is interested in approaches to the design of robust financial regulatory regimes, with a focus on emerging markets.

At the CCAF, Sarah leads research on the regulation of alternative finance in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), with the objective of providing evidence-based recommendations for policymakers and regulators seeking to develop an appropriate and fit-for-purpose regulatory framework for FinTech in the region. The position is a seconded position with FSD Africa in Nairobi, a CCAF partner in SSA. 

In the course of her professional career she has worked as a banker, lecturer and researcher, including working as a lawyer in regulation, policy advocacy and consultancy for Barclays Bank, the Busara Center for Behavioural Economics, Strathmore Law School, CGAP, ITU and GIZ.

Charles Wanga.

Charles Wanga

SSA Market Researcher, Cambridge Alternative Finance Collaboration Network, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Charles

Charles is a market research professional with extensive experience in project management, data processing and analysis, consumer insights formulation and report preparation and presentation for both quantitative and qualitative studies.

Until recently, he was engaged as the Head of Market Research and Operations, Africa at Foresight Survey and Digital Solutions Limited. He has also worked as a Research Manager at InterMedia Survey Institute, a global research consultancy that offers a full range of research and analysis, consulting, and fieldwork management and training services to strengthen development initiatives, measure social investments and enhance consumer engagement largely in financial inclusion and digital inclusion. At the Institute he was responsible for the annual Financial Inclusion Insights (FII) research programs on behalf of the Financial Services for the Poor (FSP) at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF). The programme was executed in Kenya, Tanzania, Nigeria, Uganda, Rwanda, India, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Indonesia

He has also been engaged as a Market Research Executive at Kenya Airways (KQ) Limited and as a Research Executive at Millward Brown East Africa Limited. He holds a Bachelor of Science (Statistics) from the University of Nairobi and is pursuing a Master of Science (Social Statistics) from the same university.

Louise Smith

Louise Smith

Graphic Designer, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Louise

Louise is our in-house Graphic Designer, producing all of the Centre’s reports, programmes and infographics.

She graduated from the Norwich School of Art & Design several years ago and has been actively designing ever since, she joined the Centre a year ago and has been an asset ever since.

Bob Wigley

Bob Wigley

Fellow, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Bob

Bob is Chairman of UK Finance, Victoria Beckham, Ellestone Apparel and Bink. He is a Non-Executive Director of Nordengine Capital and the Qatar Financial Centre Authority and Chairman of its Audit Committee. He is a Trustee of the Peter Jones Foundation. He is a member of the advisory boards of Blockchain, Remora, Symphony Environmental and Tetronics International. He is a Visiting Fellow of Oxford University and Chairman of Oxford University’s Centre for Corporate Reputation. He chairs the Courtyard Appeal for the Royal College of Music and sits on its Council. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants and has a business degree and an honorary doctorate from Bath University. 

He was the Chairman of Merrill Lynch Europe, Middle East and Africa before it was taken over by the Bank of America. In 2010, he was appointed an Ambassador for UK Business by the Prime Minister and chaired the Green Investment Bank Commission for the Chancellor of the Exchequer looking at how the UK might fund its carbon emission reduction obligations. In 2008, he chaired a panel of leading London financial services company CEOs for the incoming Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, producing a major report on how to maintain London’s competitiveness in global terms for the decade ahead and now sits on the Mayor’s Panel of Economic Advisers.

Between 2011 and February 2015 he was a Non-Executive Director of the Qatar Financial Centre Authority and Chairman of its Audit Committee. He was a member of the International Business Advisory Board of British Airways from April 2012 to Dec 2014. Between 2006 and 2009, Bob was a member of the Court of the Bank of England and of its Risk policy and Audit Committees, prior to which he was a Non-Executive Director of Royal Mail Group and Chairman of its Audit Committee for three years.

Keith Bear

Keith Bear

Fellow, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Keith

Keith Bear is currently a Fellow of the CCAF. Keith was responsible globally for the strategy and development of IBM’s business in financial markets, working extensively with global clients on their major transformation programmes. He has worked extensively with financial markets infrastructure firms, trade finance organisations and banks such on deployment of blockchain technologies. Keith is also a Board Advisor to three blockchain fintechs, and a lead mentor for the Barclay’s Techstars Fintech accelerator. 

Keith holds a First Class Degree in Physics from Corpus Christi College, Oxford, an MSc (Distinction) in Particle Physics from University of London, and completed an IBM Master in Business Management programme at London School of Economics. He is a member of IBM’s Industry Academy and a Board Director for the Enterprise Data Management Council.

Marwa Hammam

Marwa Hammam

Fellow, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Marwa

Marwa currently holds the post of Executive Director of the Cambridge Master of Finance (MFin) programme with overall responsibility for the day to day running of the programme, curriculum review and enhancement, corporate development, careers coaching and marketing. She developed the credit component of the programme and teaches the core fundamentals of credit and advanced credit courses. Marwa is also a regular guest speaker on credit risk management and stress testing and authors case studies on a range of finance related topics. Marwa is an alumna of the Cambridge MFin and prior to re-joining CJBS in her current capacity, held the role of Portfolio Banker managing a $9 billion Western European power and utilities portfolio with Citigroup in London and had a Senior Credit Officer designation. Marwa has 14 years’ banking experience and began her career with Citi in EMEA, where she held a number of roles in relationship management, investment banking, credit, country and market risk management between 1996 and 2002. 

Between 2002-2006, she held a business origination role at the Bank of TokyoMitsubish UFJ covering the European oil and gas space in addition to co-leading a mid-tier client conversion initiative. Marwa joined Société Générale Bank as Vice President and Senior Credit Analyst in 2006, covering a portfolio of Western European construction, media, industrial and consumer goods clients and worked closely with coverage and product areas including derivatives, structured finance, securitisation and trade finance. Marwa also had responsibility for monitoring and managing names with evident migration in credit quality and was actively involved with a number of remedial management situations during her time with SocGen. 

Marwa holds a Masters of Finance Degree from Cambridge Judge Business School, University of Cambridge, an MBA from Birmingham Business School and a BA in Business Administration and Economics from the American University in Cairo. Marwa undertook credit risk training with Citi in the late 1990s in addition to completing the six months Chase Manhattan credit course. 

Diane-Laure Arjaliès

Diane-Laure Arjaliès

Research Fellow, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Diane

Diane-Laure has been an Assistant Professor at the Ivey Business School (Western University, Canada) since 2015. Her research investigates how the fashioning of new devices and/or collective actions can help transform markets towards sustainability. An ethnographer by training, she enjoys field research and sharing her experience with students and practitioners. Over the past decade, she has studied the emergence of responsible investing, conservation finance, impact assessment, integrated reporting, and alternative currencies. With a renowned team of social scientists of finance she co-authored Chains of Finance: How Investment Management is Shaped (OUP). Diane-Laure’s work in this area has won several academic and professional prizes. The French Ministry for Finance and Economy appointed her to the Scientific Committee of the French SRI label, she is a board member of the French Social Investment Forum, an advisory member of the Principles for Responsible Investing and a Jury member of the FIR-PRI Finance and Sustainability Awards. Before working at Ivey, Diane-Laure was Assistant Professor at HEC Paris. Prior to academic life, she worked for several years as an analyst in an asset management company and as a social economy manager in a mutual insurance company. She graduated with a PhD in management, an MBA and an MPhil in organisational theory, with highest honor.

Rolf Hickmann

Rolf Hickmann

Research Fellow, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Rolf

Rolf founded pH Group, now an Experian company, in 1987; a specialised data-analytics consultancy, it focused entirely on the business population of the UK, France, and several other countries, pioneering the extensive use of databases. The pH data, tools and models are still used by the top UK commercial banks (and several in France), most key utilities, telco providers and several insurers. Prior to this Rolf was a Strategy Consultant and Case Leader at the Bolton Consulting Group in Munich, London and Paris. 

Since leaving pH Group in 2012, Rolf has been advising firms and institutions in a personal capacity on a number of projects involving SME financing and credit analysis. He is particularly interested in research that can provide the basis for effective, new funding mechanisms for deserving SMEs (especially in times of market failure), reflecting a data-led understanding of how this population segments, and what contribution each segment makes to the economy at large, as well as in risk-adjusted returns. A specific focus of interest is the cohort of “expanding” firms, which uniquely combine lower default rates with high needs, yet are typically underserved by the mainstream channels. Rolf has a BSc in Physics from the University of Texas (Austin) and an MBA in Finance from University of California, Berkeley.

Mia Gray

Mia Gray

Senior Research Fellow, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Mia

Dr Mia Gray is a Senior University Lecturer at the Department of Geography, University of Cambridge. She is an economic geographer focusing on how alternative finance, such as crowdfunding, affects regional economies, labour markets, and the distribution of opportunity. Mia is an Editor of the Cambridge Journal of Regions, Economy and Society. She was also the Acting Director of the Cambridge Centre for Gender Studies.

Lesly Goh

Fellow, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Lesly

Lesly Goh is World Bank Senior Technology Advisor, former World Bank Director and Chief Technology Officer. She is a Fellow at Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CCAF), Cambridge Judge Business School and Senior Fellow at National University of Singapore (NUS) Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy. Lesly is a Professor of Practice at ZheJiang International Business School (ZIBS). She frequently gives lectures on data governance, FinTech and digital government transformation. Her expertise is in leveraging cloud technology to deliver agile solutions at scale for sustainable development goals (SDG) at the intersection of technology and policy frameworks. For almost 30 years, her experience on FinTech, RegTech, GovTech spans across both the private and public sectors. Lesly’s experience covers a broad spectrum ranging from capital markets, retail banking, commercial banking, asset management, development banks and financial data providers.  She has worked extensively on the practical application of dDisruptive technology such as Blockchain, AI and IoT.  

A few strategic initiatives where she applied disruptive technology to address development challenges:

1. Implementation of bond issuance on Blockchain, which raised 110M AUD on Aug 23, 2018

2. Artificial intelligence (AI) for famine – project was announced at the United Nation General Assembly on Sept 23, 2018

Her personal mission is to empower women and girls to achieve the highest potential with technology as the equalizer. Her TEDxTalk and her story can be found online. 

She was featured in the GovInsider Report 2019: Women Leaders in Government. Lesly can be found on LinkedIn and her posts can be found on the World Bank blog.

Mingfeng Lin

Mingfeng Lin

Research Fellow, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Mingfeng

Dr Mingfeng Lin is an Assistant Professor of Management Information Systems at the Eller College of Management, University of Arizona. His primary research interest is IT-enabled new markets and novel business models, particularly online crowdfunding and other forms of alternative finance. He has published in journals including Management Science and Information Systems Research.

Gina Pieters

Gina Pieters

Research Fellow, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Gina

Dr Gina Pieters is currently a Lecturer at the Kenneth C. Griffin Department of Economics, University of Chicago. Her research examines the use of cryptocurrencies and similar DLT-enabled projects. She is particularly interested in their implications for international markets. In addition to PhD in Economics from the University of Minnesota, she holds a BSc in Physics from the University of California, Santa Cruz.

John Pritchard.

John Pritchard

Fellow, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

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John is the founder and Executive Chairman of Helix Management Services. After graduating in Law from Cambridge University, John trained with Allen & Overy before moving to Salomon Brothers, both in New York and London. He has been involved in the management consultancy and search industry for over 20 years and founded HMS in 1992 as a specialist legal and banking search consultancy.

John is also a sportsman. He competed successfully in two Olympic Games as well as several World and European championships as a rower. He also participated in three university Boat Races for Cambridge University. Among other non-day jobs, he has broadcast on TV and radio on sport and was the UK Chairman of the international charity ‘Right to Play’ of which he is now Chairman Emeritus. John was a director of the British Olympic Association for the six years prior to the 2012 London Games.

John rowed the length of the Mississippi river in 2014 (2,320 miles) and raised over $2,540,000 for the charity Right to Play.  He then wrote a book ‘The Great River Rowed based on the expedition blog which was published in December 2018.

John was President of the Hawks’ Club and is Chair of the Club’s development board and Director of the Hawks’ Club Ltd.  He was appointed Chairman of the Cambridge University Alumni Advisory Board, the Steering Committee, and Nominations Committee of Cambridge University in January 2014 and is now Emeritus Chair of the Alumni Advisory Board. John is a member of the Investment Board of Robinson College and a Fellow of Cambridge Judge Business School.

Jon Frost.

Jon Frost

Research Affiliate, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Jon

Jon Frost is a Senior Economist in the Innovation and the Digital Economy unit of the Bank for International Settlements (BIS). In this role, he conducts policy-oriented research on FinTech and digital innovation. He has written on FinTech credit, BigTech in finance, and technology and inequality. Previously, Jon worked at the Financial Stability Board (FSB), the Dutch central bank (DNB), VU University in Amsterdam, and in the private sector in Germany. Jon is a US citizen. He holds an MA degree in economics from the University of Munich, and a PhD in economics from the University of Groningen. He is an alumnus of the policy fellowship at the Centre for Science and Policy of the University of Cambridge. 

Ravi Vig, Research Affiliate at the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Ravi Vig

Research Affiliate, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Ravi

Ravi Vig is a business leader with general management, programme management, strategic and operations management, and management consulting experience across private, public and non-profit sectors. He has provided transformational and change leadership to the financial services industry including banking, insurance, corporate treasury and cash management, energy trading and risk management, financial supply chain management and financial inclusion domains.  

Ravi has an extensive experience in setting up, turning around and leading organisations, with strategic planning, alignment of goals and objectives between the organisation and the employees, designing the supporting operating model, and its realisation through implementation and management of operations management functions. He is passionate about building organizations with sustainable value proposition, supported and reinforced through focus on the stakeholder management, corporate culture, human capital and social capital for greater efficiencies, creativity and engagement.  

Ravi received his Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, Certification in Strategic Non-Profit Management from the Harvard Business School, and bachelors degree in Mathematics and Computer Science from the University of Santo Tomas.

Miguel A. Soriano

Miguel A. Soriano

Research Affiliate, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Miguel

Miguel Soriano is a corporate finance leader and Fintech specialist with more than 15 years of experience in investment banking, business development, strategy consulting and project management. Currently, he is a Digital Finance Specialist Consultant for IFC in their Latin America FIG Advisory practice. Prior to that, he was a Fintech Specialist Consultant for IFC in Singapore on the ASEAN Financial Innovation Network (AFIN) project. In this role, Miguel was responsible for the development of the strategic framework for identifying, cataloguing and structuring the list of Fintech companies that will collaborate with banks in an industry sandbox, in order to drive financial inclusion in the ASEAN region.

While living in Singapore, Miguel completed a PhD in Business at Singapore Management University (SMU). His doctoral research, which was funded by a research grant from MasterCard on financial inclusion and social entrepreneurship, was focused on the development of an empirical, data driven model that quantifies the key factors that drive financial inclusion and financial performance in Fintech startups. His doctoral research has immediate practical applications for VC firms and investors, which evaluate the financial performance of new technology ventures in financial inclusion, by providing a quantitative, data-driven methodology. He is viewed as an expert in Fintech and financial inclusion, and continues to work closely with Fintech startups, serving as a mentor, evaluating potential Fintech startup investment opportunities, and advising startups in financial inclusion that want to expand in emerging markets. Prior to moving to Singapore, Miguel worked in Wall Street for 12 years – first three years in Treasury at Merrill Lynch, and the remainder of the time in investment banking at Credit Suisse, JP Morgan and Deutsche Bank, giving him a in-depth perspective of both the back office and front office operations of global banks. He has a double major in Mechanical Engineering and Physics from New York University (NYU) and an MBA in Finance and International Business from NYU Stern School of Business.

Matt Homer

Matt Homer

Research Affiliate, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

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Matt focuses on the intersection of technology, finance, and policy. He has worked on these issues from a variety of perspectives: as a consultant, regulator, and funder. Most recently, at the US Agency for International Development, Matt designed and launched the RegTech for Regulators Accelerator, a first-of-its kind programme focused on supporting government innovation using startup methodologies. He also oversaw the agency’s efforts to advance inclusive fintech in India. Prior to this, Matt was a member of the consumer policy team at the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation where he helped formulate the agency’s policy on various emerging technologies and drove several efforts related to economic inclusion, student loans, and mortgage lending. He began working in the financial services space as a consultant at Deloitte where he helped develop the firm’s market strategy for financial regulatory reform. Matt received a Master of Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.

Schan Duff

Schan Duff

Research Affiliate, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Read more about Schan

Schan works at the nexus of law, finance and regulation. A lawyer by training, Schan practiced law for more than a decade with the international law firms O’Melveny & Myers and Allen & Overy. Schan currently serves an advisor to FSD Africa and the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP) where he advises on the design and implementation of regulatory frameworks to support innovation and financial inclusion in less developed economies.

Over the course of his career, Schan has been a Fellow of the Zicklin Center for Business Ethics Research, a Wharton Corporate Social Responsibility Fellow, an Olin Fellow in Law and Economics, an American Inns of Court Temple Bar Scholar and an honorary member of the Commercial Bar Association of England and Wales. He is an elected member of the American Law Institute. Schan earned a BA in Political Economy from Williams College, a JD from the University of Chicago Law School and a PhD from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania where his doctoral research focused on macroprudential regulation.

Jason Allen.

Jason Allen

Research Affiliate, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

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Dr Jason Grant Allen is a Senior Fellow at the Weizenbaum Institute for the Networked Society. His research explores how new technology enables behaviour that not only requires a legal response, but also catalyses changes in the legal system itself and provides insights into the nature of law as a technologically-mediated social practice. Jason’s work embraces both constitutional theory and financial law, positioning him well to apprehend the micro/transactional and macro/systemic aspects of alternative finance.

Jason is Joint principal investigator (with Professor Gerhard Dannemann) on a DFG-funded project on the work of émigré jurist F.A. Mann, co-ordinating the efforts of an international group of scholars of monetary law to understand the way that legal and economic theories of money evolved over the 20th century, and how current technological changes impact the conventional wisdom. Jason is a co-investigator (with principal investigator Professor Rosa Maria Lastra) on the project “Legal and Economic Conceptions of Money” under the Finance Hub of the ESRC-funded Rebuilding Macroeconomics Project at NIESR. With an interdisciplinary team, Jason is exploring how legal theory can inspire macroeconomic theory that is better grounded and more policy-relevant.

Jason received a BA & LLB (1st) from the University of Tasmania (2007), LLM in International Economic Law from the University of Augsburg as a DAAD scholar (2010), and PhD in Law from the University of Cambridge as a Poynton Scholar (2017). He was an Alexander von Humboldt Post-Doctoral Scholar at the Humboldt University Centre for British Studies (2017-2019). Jason is a dual-qualified lawyer (NY and Australia, currently non-practising) and served as Judicial Assistant to the Rt. Hon. Sir Geoffrey Vos, Chancellor of the High Court of England and Wales (2016-2017). His interest in payments technology and alternative finance began in 2013 with an off-grid solar start-up combining smart metering, peer-to-beer energy transmission, and a blockchain-based payments system. Jason is currently working on a start-up project building a financial services platform for the West African market. Jason is a Visiting Fellow at the University of New South Wales and an Adjunct Lecturer at the University of Tasmania.

Nafis Alam

Nafis Alam

Research Affiliate, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

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Nafis is currently working as an Associate Professor of Finance at Henley Business School Malaysia, University of Reading Malaysia. He previously served as an Associate Professor of Finance at the Nottingham University Business School (NUBS) in the University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus (UNMC).

Prior to this, he was attached with Monash University where he worked as a lecturer in finance. His scholarly articles have been published in leading journals including The World Economy, Emerging Markets Review, Pacific Basin Finance Journal, Journal of Asset Management, Journal of Banking Regulation, Review of Islamic Economics and Journal of Financial Services Marketing among others. He has also co-authored five books on Islamic Finance – among them is Encyclopaedia of Islamic Finance which is the first of its kind and has sold over 1000 copies worldwide.

As a frequent traveller, he has given lectures on finance and Islamic finance across the world, including: Harvard Islamic Finance forum at Harvard Law School; a Gulf Research Meeting at Cambridge University, UK; Durham University Summer School; Seoul International Finance Conference (SIFIC); World Islamic Economic Forum (WIFE); OIC Asia Trade and Economic Forum, Central bank of Turkey among others. Dr Alam has served as a visiting Associate Professor at various universities in the UK and Indonesia. He was featured as a Professor of the Month by Financial Times (FT) in 2014 and received an award for Upcoming Personality in Islamic Finance in 2016 presented by GIFA and hosted by the Indonesian government.

He is an avid writer and contribute regularly to the mainstream newspaper, economic forum and professional outlets like WEF, Huffington Post,The Edge, The Conversation among others. He has been interviewed by Sputnik, UK; CBS, USA, ABC Australia. Recently, He has been appointed as a Workshop Director for Fintech and Islamic Finance Workshop by the Gulf Research Council of University of Cambridge. He is one of the top influencer in the area of Fintech, Banking regulation, financial Inclusion and Islamic finance. He mentors Fintech platforms in the SEA region. He can be followed on Twitter

Pawee Jenweeranon

Pawee Jenweeranon

Research Affiliate, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

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Pawee is a lecturer in law at the Faculty of Law, Thammasat University, Thailand. Prior joining Thammasat University, Pawee was a legal officer at the National Anti-Corruption Commission and the Supreme Court of Thailand. His research concerns the regulatory framework for the development of financial technology to enhance financial inclusion, with particular reference to ASEAN countries. He engaged in research projects related to fintech while he was working as a visiting researcher at the National University of Singapore and the Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition. Pawee received an LLB and LLM from Thammasat University (Thailand) and a second LLM from Nagoya University (Japan).

Rasheed Saleuddin

Rasheed Saleuddin

Research Affiliate, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

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Dr Rasheed Saleuddin is a post-doc at the Cambridge Judge Business School’s Centre for Endowment Asset Management. His policy-focused works include a Palgrave Macmillan book on financial regulation, Regulating Securitized Products: A Post Crisis Guide, while his first academic book, The Government of Markets, on the role of the US government in the making of modern capital markets, will be published by Palgrave in 2019. Rasheed’s academic and professional interests currently lie in examining the theories, past experiences and current policy dilemmas involved with the intersection of state regulation and policy responses, as well as in alternative finance. Before completing his PhD in history at the University of Cambridge as a fully-funded CERF Scholar, he was a hedge fund manager at the activist Canadian investment firm, West Face Capital. Before 2008 he specialised in regulatory solutions for banks all over the world. He also holds a masters degree in regulation, with distinction, from the LSE, and is eligible to use the Chartered Financial Analyst designation. He is currently an early stage investor in and advisor to fintech companies.

Davinia Cogan

Davinia Cogan

Research Affiliate, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

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Davinia Cogan works at Energy 4 Impact, a UNDP and World Bank founded non-profit focused on finding business solutions to energy poverty. Davinia joined Energy 4 Impact in 2013 to help launch their business advisory team in East Africa, and managed the rollout of a USAID funded programme bringing pay-as-you-go solar home systems to Rwanda. She is the Programme Manager of Crowd Power, a UK government funded programme exploring the role of crowdfunding and peer-to-peer lending in financing off-grid energy startups in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. Prior to joining Energy 4 Impact, Davinia completed a microfinance fellowship in Tajikistan and worked as a consultant to non-profits and social enterprises including the Social Stock Exchange in London. She also held roles in investment management at ING Australia. She has a MA in International Studies from the University of Sydney and a Bachelor of Business (Finance, International Business) from the University of Technology Sydney.

Eva Huang, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

Eva Huang

Research Affiliate, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

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Dr Eva Huang is a Lecturer of the Discipline of Business Law at the University of Sydney Business School, and the founder and editor of the Journal of Chinese Tax and Policy. She has close collaborative relationships with the Department of Public Finance and the Law School of Xiamen University. This collaboration resulted in the first English language comprehensive work on Chinese taxation – Taxation in China (Thomson Reuters, 2017 forthcoming), her co-author is Professor Bin Yang. Her research interests include regulating alternative finance and internet finance, financial innovation – especially fintech and regtech, and comparative fiscal policy and tax law. She worked for the Australian Treasury as a policy analyst, focusing on the tax policy of non-profit organisations. Eva has extensive experience as a translator and interpreter, specialising in financial, technical and legal material. She has consulted tax and business advisors in regards to cross-border transactions involving China. Eva is also a freelance art dealer and curator, specialising in contemporary Chinese sculpture, oil, and watercolours using traditional medium and technique. Eva has a PhD, a Juris Doctor, a Masters of Taxation, and double degrees in Arts (Social Policy and German), and Commerce (Accounting and Economics) with First Class Honours (Commercial Law) from the University of Sydney.

Zain Umer

Zain Umer

Research Associate in Regulatory Innovation, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

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Zain is a Research Associate in regulatory innovation and financial inclusion at CCAF where his focus has been innovation offices, financial inclusion and fintech. He is currently on secondment from the UK Financial Conduct Authority where he worked across a number of functions. He served as engagement lead for Innovate, working closely with global financial regulators and the UK Government as well as on the Global Financial Innovation Network. Zain was also an Enforcement Associate, focusing on cases of financial crime including bribery, corruption and terrorist finance. Zain holds a bachelors degree in law. 

Rotem Shneor.

Rotem Shneor

Research affiliate, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

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Rotem is an associate professor at the University of Agder’s (UiA) School of Business and Law in Norway and serves as the academic director of the university’s Centre of Entrepreneurship, as well as the founder and head of the university’s Crowdfunding Research Centre. In addition, he is serving as a research affiliate at the CCAF, contributing to and co-authoring its annual benchmarking reports. He holds a PhD in International Management from UiA and a masters degree from the Norwegian School of Economics (NHH).

Intertwined with his academic work Rotem has established the Nordic Crowdfunding Alliance of platforms, as well as co-founding and currently serving on the board of the Norwegian Crowdfunding Association. His research covers crowdfunding success, behaviour and motivations, internet marketing, and cognitive aspects of entrepreneurship. He has a record of two decades in teaching, researching and supporting entrepreneurship at local, national, and international levels. He has published in academic journals (e.g. JBR, ERD, IJoEM, CCM, BJM, JPBM, JPM and EEP), trade magazines, as well as contributing several chapters to research-focused edited books and textbooks. Recently, he has served as lead editor and contributor in an edited volume on “Advances in Crowdfunding: Research and Practice” published by Palgrave McMillan in 2020.

Ana Odorovic.

Ana Odorovic

Research affiliate, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

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Ana is a PhD candidate at the DFG Graduate School in Law and Economics at the University of Hamburg and a lecturer at the University of Belgrade. Her PhD thesis deals with the question of overcoming asymmetric information in the crowdfunding market from a law and economics perspective. In 2018, she was a visiting researcher at the University of Oxford. Her research interests span across the fields of economic analysis of law and financial regulation. 

Ana also acts as a consultant on regulatory and policy issues in relation to FinTech. She holds an LLM degree in business law from the Panthéon-Assas University (Paris 2) and a master’s degree in economics from the University of Belgrade.

Karsten Wenzlaff

Karsten Wenzlaff

Research affiliate, Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance

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Karsten has a research focus on alternative finance, FinTech and crowdfunding, in particularly civic crowdfunding and corporate crowdfunding. He teaches and researches at the University of Hamburg at the Chair for Digital Markets. He has received an MPhil in International Relations with a thesis on international financial regulation from the University of Cambridge. Karsten is the author of the first European Crowdfunding-Survey in 2011. 

Since 2013, he has supported the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CCAF) on the Alternative Finance Benchmarking Report, editing the European Alternative Finance Benchmarking Report since 2017. In 2020, he was one of the authors of the CCAF’s Global Alternative Finance Benchmarking Report and became part of the Centre’s COVID-19 Response Team. In 2020, he also published the first study on FinTech/alternative finance self-regulation in Europe, in co-authorship with Ana Odorovic. Between 2014 and 2016, Karsten was a member of the European Crowdfunding Stakeholder Forum, an advisory body to the European Commission.