Nobel Economics Prize winner and honorary professor of SCU, Robert Merton, delivers a lecture in SCU


Mr. Robert Merton, Nobel Economics Prize winner, one of the founders of modern finance and the highest level professor of Harvard Business School, USA, gave a key speech of “Role of financial innovation, financial science and derivative market in the global economic growth and development” on September 13. Hundreds of teachers and students from the School of Economics and the School of Business of SCU listened to this wonderful lecture.

Prof. Merton shared his views by focusing on the financial innovation, financial science, global economic growth and the growing derivative market. Also he introduced the historical development of the financial science; and by taking all previous significant financial crises as examples, he analyzed the function of financial derivative tools in the dispersion of risks, noting that the innovation in the derivative tools will help to improve the policy target, and reduce the costs arising from the diversification of risks, etc.. He also underlined the importance of the derivative market and the financial innovation in today’s world economic development. His simple but profound, humorous and interesting speech aroused frequent warm applauses at the venue.

During the Q&A activity, Prof. Merton answered the questions raised by the teachers and students as to the morality and ethics in the application of financial derivatives and the return of stock yields. As for the students longing to be engaged in the financial industry, he also gave his suggestions, and conducted in-depth analysis on relevant issues. He said that the original intention of the financial tool design was positive; however, given the different qualifications of the users and the unpredictable change of the actual market, the reasonable use of derivatives encountered some challenges; therefore, the institutions of higher learning should strengthen the cultivation of students in the finance discipline in terms of professional ethics, and promote the healthy development of the financial industry. 

After the speech, Yan Shijing, Vice President of SCU, met with Prof. Merton at the VIPs Hall in the Wangjiang Campus, exchanged opinions about further academic exchange and cooperation, and, on behalf of SCU, presented the certificate of honorary professor to Prof. Merton.

During the meeting, Yan Shijing, on behalf of SCU, extended warm welcome to the visit of the delegation led by Prof. Merton on the eve of the 121st anniversary of SCU, and hoped that Prof. Merton could visit SCU more frequently in the future, and render assistance in the construction of the finance discipline and the development of SCU.

Mr. Robert Merton said that he recognizes and supports SCU’s efforts to build itself into a world-class university, adding that he had felt the profound history of SCU. He hoped that in the future he would like to visit SCU more often, and conduct more exchange and cooperation with SCU. He believed that SCU has made lots of outstanding achievements, however, innovative development in all disciplines and fields shall be bolstered to build itself into a world-class university. The financial science should closely combine with the practice, and the university and scholars should conduct interdisciplinary cooperation with an open mind, he stressed. SCU has the strategic insight of globalization, so it should make more serious and in-depth study so as to make more contributions to the improvement of the financial system in China and even other countries throughout the world.