Prof Avinash Persaud
Finance Fellow

Prof Avinash Persaud is the founder and Chairman of Intelligence Capital, an investment advisor for sovereigns. He also holds the Mercer Memorial Chair in Commerce at Gresham College. Professor Persaud is a Governor of the London School of Economics and a Member of its Investment and Information Committees.

He is also a Trustee of the Overseas Development Institute, member of its Audit Committee and Chairman of its Business Partnership Group, as well as being a Trustee of GARP. He is Chair of the Investment Flows Working Party of the Commonwealth Business Council. In addition to other awards, he is the only individual to win the two major awards in international finance, the Jacques de Larosiere Award and a Bronze Amex Bank Award. He has developed and published original work in the field of Liquidity Black Hole Theory, Investors’ Shifting Appetite for Risk and EMU expectations calculators. Formerly, he has been Global Head of Research at State Street, Head of Currency and Commodity research at J. P. Morgan, Director of Debt Research at UBS and a Visiting Scholar at the IMF.


Dr. Nina Rawal
Finance Fellow

Dr. Nina Rawal is the founder of emerging health ventures, a global health focused venture capital fund. She previously headed the life science investment team at Industrifonden, a USD 600m VC fund. Previous experience also includes Boston Consulting Group in Stockholm and New York, and VP Strategy and Ventures at Gambro (Baxter Group). She serves as advisor to Medecins Sans Frontieres’ Innovation Unit and on the nomination committee of Stockholms Sjukhem, a non-profit hospital. Nina holds a MSc in Biomedicine and a PhD in Molecular Neurobiology, both from the Karolinska Institute with research work done at Columbia University and Hopital la Salpetriere. Recognition for her work includes the selection as a WEF Young Global Leader and a ’40 under 40 – European Young Leader.


Alberto Gallo
Finance Fellow

Alberto Gallo is a macro fund manager, economist and writer. Over the years, he has highlighted ways to improve our financial system, to make it more equal and sustainable, and to prevent future crises. Alberto became an expert on financial crises, working as a macro economist in the US during the Lehman collapse and in Europe throughout the Eurozone crisis. In 2016, he left macroeconomic research to launch a global fund designed to navigate bond markets as the era of monetary stimulus ends.
His track record includes foreseeing the financial crisis of 2008, as well as the European crisis of 2010, the subsequent central bank driven recovery, and the following rise in inequality and global populism.

Alberto is active in the financial policy debate as an advisor to central banks and regulators on macro financial stability, and as a frequent contributor to the Financial Times, the Wall Street Journal, the World Economic Forum, and a Bloomberg View columnist. He is also a guest faculty at his alma mater, Bocconi University.


Jaap van Dam
Finance Fellow

Jaap is an experienced and innovative Strategist. He is the investment director responsible for developing and benchmarking PGGM’s Investment Practice and is currently working on PFZW’s Investment Strategy 2025. He has broad knowledge and experience on strategy, investment policy formulation, asset allocation and value chain design. In 2013 he was voted CIO / “Investment Head of the Year” by aiCIO. He is also the Chairman of the VBDO, the Dutch Association of Investors for Sustainable Development, Chairman of European Chapter of the 300 Club and Member of the Research Committee International Centre for Pension Management (ICPM). Together with Kees Koedijk and Alfred Slager he authored “Achieving Investment Excellence: A Practical Guide for Trustees of Pension Funds, Endowments and Foundations.” He holds a Master’s Degree in Finance from the Erasmus University Rotterdam.


Marcus Svedberg
Finance Fellow

Marcus Svedberg is a Political Economist with 20 years of experience from academia, finance and international organizations. He was an advisor to the Executive Director at the World Bank before taking up his current role as a Senior Advisor to the recently established Stockholm Sustainable Finance Center. Previously, he was the Chief Economist at asset management company East Capital for ten years and Chief Analyst at the Stockholm Institute for Transition Economics for five years.

He has masters degrees from LSE and Graduate Institute in Geneva and has also worked for a number of think tanks.


Christian Andersson
Fellow Finance

Christian Andersson formed Worthwhile Capital Partners in 2018 after leaving the Australian asset management company Fidante Partners with USD 39bn of asset under management. At Fidante Partners, he was responsible for the firm’s business development in the Nordic region and supported investors’ commitment to water infrastructure and renewable infrastructure funds.

Prior to this, Christian was the Managing Director for the Nordic Pension & Insurance Solutions Group at Goldman Sachs and at Bank of America Merrill Lynch in London, where he lived for 17 years. His team managed the banks’ advisory to state pension fund, occupational pension funds and life insurers in the Nordic region and provided advice to senior decision makers on strategic asset allocation, asset and liability modelling and regulatory (Solvency II) portfolio optimization. He also has a background with SEB and the Riksbank in Stockholm, where he began his career in 1990.


Kerim Kaskal
Finance Fellow

Kerim has a long-standing professional experience as an investor across multiple asset classes, asset allocation, portfolio construction and private investor sphere. He is a strong advocate for sustainable investing. He is on the Advisory Board of NextEnergy Capital. Prior to this he was CIO and Head of Alternatives for a period of 5 years at Worthwhile Capital Partners from AP3 – the Third National Pension Fund in Sweden. In this role, he was responsible for the USD 35 bn fund’s strategic asset allocation and risk exposure. Prior to joining AP3, Kerim was a co-founder of Ambrosia Asset Management and Nektar Asset Management as well as a macro fixed income hedge fund at Brummer & Partners, where he developed a skillset as a macro and relative value trader spanning across business cycles. Before that, Kerim was a fixed income and derivatives trader at Stora, SEB and JP Bank.


Eric Lonergan
Finance Fellow

Eric Lonergan is a macro hedge fund manager, economist, and writer. He is a macro hedge-fund manager at M&G Investments in London. Prior to this he was the Managing Director & Head of economics and Strategy at JPMorgan Cazenove. He has written for Foreign Affairs, The Financial Times, and The Economist. He also advises governments and policymakers. He first advocated expanding the tools of central banks to including cash transfers to households in the Financial Times in 2002. In December 2008, he advocated the policy as the most efficient way out of recession post-financial crisis, contributing to a growing debate over the need for ‘helicopter money’. Eric is also a supporter of Big Issue Invest (BII), the investment arm of The Big Issue, and is one of the initial limited partners in BII’s Social Enterprise Investment Fund LP. In a personal capacity, he makes direct investments in social enterprises. He also supports and advises The Empathy Museum. He studied PPE at the University of Oxford and has an MSc in economics and philosophy from the London School of Economics.


Victoria Barbary
Finance Fellow

Victoria Barbary, Director, Sovereign Wealth Center Victoria Barbary is the director of the Sovereign Wealth Center and a leading expert on sovereign wealth funds. She is also a non-resident fellow at the Esade Business School’s Center for Global Economy and Geopolitics (Esadegeo) in Madrid and was previously a senior researcher at the Sovereign Investment Lab, based at the Paolo Baffi Centre on Central Banking and Financial Regulation at Bocconi University in Milan. Before joining Institutional Investor, Victoria was the senior analyst in the office of the chairman at Monitor Group, a leading international consulting firm. At Monitor she headed the emerging markets research team, producing material on a wide range of economic, investment and development issues in the Middle East and North Africa, sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. She is and has been widely published and quoted in the media. She holds a PhD in history from the University of Cambridge, a masters with distinction and BA (Hons) in history from the University of Durham.


Øystein Stephansen
Finance Fellow

Øystein Stephansen is an experienced Financial expert with a demonstrated history of working in the banking industry. He is skilled in Derivatives, Financial Analysis, Finance, Financial Markets, and Investment Banking. Presently he is the Head of Financial Institutions Coverage at SEB Norway. Before this, he was Senior Analyst, Risk Advisory, FICC at DNB Markets. He has also been a Member of Strategy Council for Norwegian Government Pension Fund – Global at Ministry of Finance, Norway. He worked with DNB Livsforsikring, Gjensidige NOR, Nordea Markets and others. He is a Strong finance professional with a M.Sc focused in Economics from London School of Economics and Political Science, U. of London.


David Pitt-Watson
Finance Fellow

Mr Pitt-Watson has been involved with UNEP FI for many years, and became its Co-Chair in 2013. He is recognised globally as a leading thinker and practitioner in the field of responsible investment and business practice. As co-founder, and former CEO of Hermes Focus Funds and Equity Ownership Service, he built and led the largest responsible investment group of any institutional fund manager in the world. He is currently an Executive Fellow at the London Business School, is a board member of the International Corporate Governance Network, and was closely involved in the setting up of the UN’s Principles for Responsible Investment. He has been involved in policy making in the UK, Europe and around the world, particularly in the field of corporate governance and financial market regulation, and has written extensively on these subjects. His book, The New Capitalists, which summarises much of his thinking, has been influential around the world and translated into five languages. He is an independent non-executive at KPMG and an advisor to Aviva Investors. He is also Treasurer of Oxfam.


Martin Skancke
Finance Fellow

Martin Skancke is the Chair of PRI Association Board of directors. He developed and headed the Asset Management Department of the Norwegian Ministry of Finance, which is responsible for the management of the Government Pension Fund, with assets of over US$800 billion. He chaired the Expert Group appointed by the Norwegian Ministry of Finance to assess the Government Pension Fund Global’s (GPFG) use of exclusion and ownership strategies in coal and petroleum companies. He served as Chairman of the World Economic Forum’s Public & Institutional Investors Industry Agenda Council (2010-2011) and was the Norwegian representative in the drafting of the Santiago Principles for Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWFs) and in the International Forum of SWFs. He was Director General to the Norwegian Prime Minister and head of the Domestic Policy Department (2002-2006). In this role, he was chief advisor to the Prime Minister of Norway on economic policy issues. Prior to this he worked for more than a decade on macroeconomic policy issues, including serving as Deputy Director General at the Ministry of Finance and head of the Section for Monetary Policy and Public Finances. Martin has also worked at the Oslo office of McKinsey&Co, advising Norwegian and international companies on business strategy issues


Gustavo Barrata
Finance Fellow

He is an experienced Market maker and trader of fixed income products with exposure in Market microstructure and stream event processing. He is a Member of AFME Primary Dealer Board, Market-Making Working Group and MTS Market Committee. He is into Treasury and portfolio management at Intesa Bank Ireland. He was Head of Government Bonds at Banca IMI. He also worked at Caboto Securities Ltd.and Tullett and Tokyo Forex. He has 23 years of experience.
He studied at Universita Bocconi, Milan Italy.


Marshall Auerback
Finance Fellow

Marshall Auerback is currently a private equity investor, a writer for the Independent Media Institute, (a nonprofit organization that features a diverse array of independent media projects and programs), and a Research Associate for the Levy Institute at Bard College. He is also affiliated with American Compass, a bipartisan think tank that seeks to restore an economic consensus emphasizing the importance of family, community, and industry to enhance economic security, liberty and a more equitable form of prosperity.

He has been a financial market practitioner for over 30 years in Hong Kong, Tokyo, London, and New York,
A prolific economics commentator ( he has also worked as Director for Institutional Partnerships for the Institute for New Economic Thinking from July 2012-July 2015.  Mr Auerback graduated magna cum laude in economics and philosophy with a BA from Queen’s University in Canada in 1981 and received a law degree from Corpus Christi College, University of Oxford in 1983. His twitter handle is @mauerback


Joseph Mariathasan
Finance Fellow

Joseph Mariathasan has extensive knowledge of risk management, ESG and impact investing issues, asset allocation, derivatives, treasury, fixed interest, listed equity and private equity fund management. He is a Director of GIST, a company whose mission is to make sustainability accessible to all. He is also a Contributing Editor at Investments & Pensions Europe. He is on the Advisory Boards of Moneyhub, the Open Banking platform that enables enterprises to enhance the lifetime financial wellness of people, their communities and their businesses; and pinBox Solutions, whose mission is saving the next billion from old-age poverty. He has been responsible for launching many innovative ventures which include: a joint venture quantitatively managed equity fund with Harry Markowitz, the Nobel prize winner; a joint venture with the UTI to launch one of India’s first index funds; a joint venture to launch the first index fund for China; a $100m private equity joint venture firm in China with an arm of the UK government; and other China-related activities including the launch of Investments & Pensions China and acting as a Partner of Pangaea Finance Partners focussed on cross- border transactions with Chinese financial institutions. Joseph has also worked on corporate finance and strategy consultancy projects for many of the leading global financial services companies encompassing potential acquisitions, market and competitor positioning, product strategy, fundraising strategy etc.

Joseph has a first degree and a doctorate in Physics from Oxford University and has obtained a number of professional qualifications, including membership of The London Stock Exchange and Membership of the Association of Corporate Treasurers.


Dirk Schoenmaker
Finance Fellow

Dirk Schoenmaker is a Professor of Banking and Finance at the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and Director of the Erasmus Platform for Sustainable Value Creation. He is also a Non-Resident Fellow at the think tank Bruegel and a Research Fellow at the CEPR. His research covers the fields of sustainable finance, central banking, financial supervision, European banking and institutional investors. Before joining RSM, Dirk was Dean of the Duisenberg School of Finance and worked at the Dutch Ministry of Finance and the Bank of England. He is a regular consultant for the IMF, the OECD, the EBRD, the European Commission, the European Central Bank and several other central banks. Dirk is co-author of the textbooks Principles of Sustainable Finance (OUP) and Financial Markets and Institutions: A European Perspective (CUP) and author of Governance of International Banking: The Financial Trilemma (OUP).


Thorsten Beck
Finance Fellow

Thorsten Beck is professor of banking and finance at Cass Business School in London. He is also a research fellow of the Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) and the CESifo. He was professor of economics from 2008 to 2014 at Tilburg University and the founding chair of the European Banking Center  from 2008 to 2013. Previously he worked in the research department of the World Bank and has also worked as consultant for – among others –  the European Central Bank, the Bank of England, the BIS, the IMF, the European Commission, and the German Development Corporation. His research, academic publications and operational work have focused on two major questions: What is the relationship between finance and economic development? What policies are needed to build a sound and effective financial system? Recently, he has concentrated on access to financial services, including SME finance, as well as on the design of regulatory and bank resolution frameworks. In addition to numerous academic publications in leading economics and finance journals, he has co-authored several policy reports on access to finance, financial systems in Africa and cross-border banking.  His country experience, both in operational and research work, includes Bangladesh, Bolivia, Brazil, China, Colombia, Egypt, Mexico, Russia and several countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. In addition to presentation at numerous academic conferences, including several keynote addresses, he is invited regularly to policy panels across Europe. He holds a PhD from the University of Virginia and an MA from the University of Tübingen in Germany.

Thorsten Beck is Professor of Banking and Finance at Cass Business School in London and Professor of Economics at Tilburg University in the Netherlands. He was the founding chair of the European Banking Center at Tilburg University from 2008 to 2013. Previously he worked in the research department of the World Bank and has also worked as consultant for – among others – the IMF, the European Commission, and the German Development Corporation. His research and policy work has focused on international banking and corporate finance and has been published in the Journal of Finance, Journal of Financial Economics, Journal of Monetary Economics and Journal of Economic Growth. His research and policy work has focused on Eastern, Central and Western Europe, Sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America. He is also Research Fellow in the Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) in London and a Fellow in the Center for Financial Studies in Frankfurt. He studied at T übingen University, Universidad de Costa Rica, University of Kansas and University of Virginia.


Stijn Claessens
Finance Fellow

Stijn Claessens is the Deputy Head of the Monetary and Economic Department. He is also Head of Financial Stability Policy, a position he has held since joining the BIS in March 2017. In the past, He worked at the World Bank in various positions. From 2007 to 2014, he was Assistant Director in the Research Department of the International Monetary Fund. From 2015 to early 2017, he was Senior Adviser in the Division of International Finance of the Federal Reserve Board. Mr Claessens is author of numerous publications in the fields of monetary policy, international finance and international capital flows. He holds a PhD in business economics from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and a master’s degree from Erasmus University, Rotterdam. He taught at the New York University business school and the University of Amsterdam.


Max Von Bismarck
Finance Fellow

Max is a European serial entrepreneur. He is Chief Business Officer & Managing Director of Deposit Solutions. Deposit Solutions is an Open Banking pioneer building the new industry standard for the global USD 50 trillion savings deposit market. Previously Mr. von Bismarck was Partner and the CEO Europe for SkyBridge Capital, the global alternative investment firm. At SkyBridge he helped grow the firm from a smaller US based seeding business to a leading global alternative asset management firm with USD 12billion AUM. From 2005 until 2011 he was Director and Head of Investors at the World Economic Forum in Geneva and New York. Prior to this, he was a Co-Founder & Managing Director at Public One Strategy Consulting. Previously, he was part of the initial team of the technology company Mondus Limited that originated out of Oxford University. Mr. von Bismarck holds a German law degree and an Executive Masters in Global Leadership from the World Economic Forum (Program in collaboration with Wharton School of Business, Columbia University, INSEAD and London Business School). Max was named a German-American Young Leader of the Atlantik Brücke in 2004, a Global Leadership Fellow by the World Economic Forum in 2005, a 40 under 40 European Young Leader in 2013 and in 2014 was named a Member of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO). He serves as a Senior Advisor Europe to the Berggruen Institute and is a former Senior Advisor on Global Business at the Asia-Pacific Research Center of Stanford University.