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Executive Education - March 08, 2013

Yale School of Management and EDHEC-Risk Institute offer executive training courses in Advanced Risk and Investment Management - an interview with Steven Permut

Yale School of Management and EDHEC-Risk Institute have teamed up to offer executive education courses based on the academic research conducted by both Yale School of Management and EDHEC-Risk finance faculty. The focus of these seminars will be on utilising the latest academic insights to help investment professionals better understand and implement advanced investment approaches and methodologies. In this interview, Steven Permut, Deputy Director, Executive Programs at the Yale School of Management, discusses Yale SOM and EDHEC-Risk Institute's shared history of bringing theory to practice.

Steven Permut

EDHEC-Risk Institute and Yale School of Management entered into a strategic partnership agreement last year to jointly offer executive education training courses in the area of "Advanced Risk and Investment Management." Could you tell us some of the reasons behind Yale SOM's decision to join forces with EDHEC-Risk Institute in this way?

Steven Permut: Yale is pleased to join forces with one of the most highly rated risk and asset management research centers to further extend our own international participation with the investment community in Europe, Asia, and beyond.

EDHEC’s outstanding record of accomplishment in research and teaching coupled with its renowned finance faculty and their contributions to the investment community provided a compelling basis for our partnership. We also wanted to contribute to the important field of risk management. Identifying, evaluating, and responding to risk from all sources is really critical for investment professionals and financial risk managers as well as those in policy and regulatory positions.

The risks faced by institutional investors come from many sources and factors. The problem is how to identify those risks, quantify, and then control them with the latest analytical tools. There has been increased emphasis placed on new tools for tackling these three issues following the most recent crisis. Faculty at Yale SOM and EDHEC have been major contributors to this field. Both institutions have a history of bringing theory to practice.

The focus of the seminars will be on utilising the latest academic insights to help investment professionals manage complexity in investment decisions. Could you tell us a little bit about why the theme of "managing complexity" is part of Yale SOM's strategic mission and philosophy?

Steven Permut: Complexity is inherent in any attempt to manage risk when constructing portfolios and then evaluating a manager’s investment decisions. Since complexity can’t be directly eliminated, one approach is to incorporate new methods and techniques for dealing with risks in portfolios such as optimization and financial econometric models and new quantitative measures that better control risk and enhance performance in complex environments.

The goal is to outperform a given benchmark: identify risks, construct reasonable indices to evaluate performance, and determine how you actually outperform the indices. Even what was previously thought of as the simple task in the investment management process of selecting a benchmark with which to evaluate an asset manager has been challenged by faculty at both Yale and EDHEC.

The first of these joint seminars are planned for the end of the year at Yale SOM's New Haven campus and EDHEC-Risk Institute's campus in London, England. What are your hopes for these initial seminars?

Steven Permut: Our hope is quite simple: that participants gain useful knowledge of the latest techniques and approaches to help them improve their financial decision-making and portfolio performance. A secondary benefit is the opportunity to meet other professionals from a wide variety of settings and backgrounds.

Participants in the series of seminars will be able to acquire a Yale SOM - EDHEC-Risk Institute “Certificate in Risk and Investment Management.” Could you provide us with any more information about this certificate?

Steven Permut: The seminars are part of a structured program for professionals who may have been out of school for a while and want to return for additional ongoing continuing education to keep their skills honed. The certificate confirms the successful completion of the advanced work. The program is expected to attract participants who have earned the coveted CFA designation, as well as regulators and policy experts, fund managers involved with sovereign investment funds, and those involved in the management of state and local government who manage or supervise their respective pension funds.

About Steven Permut

Steven Permut, PhD, is Deputy Director, Executive Programs at the Yale School of Management.

Steven has been a professor and practitioner over thirty years, starting at Yale in 1976 at the founding of the School of Management where he developed the first MBA marketing management curriculum. An active consultant with nearly fifty major firms specializing in bringing new technology to market, he recently served on the faculty of the University of Arizona’s Eller College of Management where he won the Distinguished Faculty Teaching Award seven times in the Executive, Evening, and full-time MBA programs before returning to Yale. He previously served on the resident faculty of Boston University’s International MBA Program in Brussels, Belgium for executives in Western Europe, and was a visiting professor at the University of Lille, France. He has created and delivered over 500 executive education programs across the globe. At Yale he is responsible for the curriculum and design of custom executive programs and seminars including the joint partnership with EDHEC-Risk Institute. He can be contacted at steven.permut@yale.edu