Monday, 20 September 2010 at 1:00PM
Guildhall

Sustainability: Root Problems in Finance

Presented by Alderman Alison Gowman

The Long Finance initiative to establish a World Centre of Thinking on Long-Term Finance began in 2007 with a question, "When would we know our financial system is working?" which challenges a system that can't provide today's 20 year olds with a reliable financial retirement structure. The aim of the Long Finance Institute is "to improve society's understanding and use of finance over the long-term." The research project proposals range from theory versus practice or fiscal versus monetary to sustainability versus robustness. The iconic project for Long Finance is the Eternal Coin, with the objective of starting a global debate about society's values over the long-term.

Conference speakers
alderman-alison-gowman

Alison Gowman is Alderman for the Ward of Dowgate in the City of London as well as being a partner in the international law firm DLA Piper UK LLP specialising in real estate. Prior to becoming an Alderman she served for 11 years as a member and Deputy for the Ward of Dowgate. She has been involved in all aspects of the work of the City of London during her years of service and is presently Chairman of the Energy Working Party. She is an Assistant of the Glovers' Livery Company. She is the Vice Chair of the Law Society E-conveyancing Task Force and Member of the City of London Law Society Land Law Committee. She is a Trustee of the Sir John Soane's Museum and of the Greenwich Foundation for the Old Royal Naval College.

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alderman-professor-michael-mainelli

Alderman Professor Michael Mainelli is Emeritus Mercers' School Memorial Professor of Commerce at Gresham College, having held the chair from 2005 to 2009. His first degree was in Government from Harvard, followed by mathematics and engineering studies at Trinity College Dublin and a PhD from the London School of Economics in chaotic systems, where he was also a Visiting Professor.

Professor Mainelli is Executive Chairman of Z/Yen, the City of London’s leading commercial think-tank and venture firm, which he co-founded in 1994 to promote societal advance through better finance and technology. A qualified accountant (FCCA), securities professional (FCSI), computer specialist (FBCS) and management consultant (FIC), Michael began his career as a research scientist in aerospace (rockets) and computing (architecture & mapping). He later became a senior partner with accountants BDO Binder Hamlyn directing global consulting projects. During the 1990s he worked for the UK Ministry of Defence as Corporate Development Director for Europe’s then largest R&D firm, the Defence Evaluation & Research Agency leading to two privatisations. Career highlights include directing Z/Yen’s Long Finance initiative with Gresham College and the City of London Corporation asking “when would we know our financial system is working?” as well as creating the Global Financial Centres Index, Global Intellectual Property Index, London Accord and Farsight Award. Michael also conceived and produced the first complete digital map of the world in 1983, Mundocart (a 1980’s Google Earth), and the $20 million Geodat consortium cartography project.

Michael is non-executive Director of the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UK’s national body for standards and laboratories), AIM-listed Sirius Minerals plc (potash mining), AIM-listed Wishbone Gold Plc; Alderman for Broad Street Ward (elected) at the City of London Corporation; Almoner for Christ’s Hospital School; Trustee of International Fund for Animal Welfare. Michael has held numerous advisory posts, for example with Hitachi UK, City University and HM Treasury. Michael won a 1996 UK Foresight Challenge award for the Financial Laboratory, 2003 UK Smart Award for prediction software, 2005 British Computer Society Director of the Year, 2011 Technology Strategy Board Challenge Award for financial avatars, and was awarded Gentiluomo of the Associazione Cavalieri di San Silvestro in 2011. Michael is a Liveryman, Worshipful Company of World Traders, Freeman, Watermen & Lightermen, and represents the Financial Services Group of Livery Companies.

Michael has published over 40 journal articles, 150 commercial articles and four books. Michael’s humorous risk/reward management novel, Clean Business Cuisine: Now and Z/Yen, written with Ian Harris, was a Sunday Times Book of the Week in 2000; Accountancy Age described it as “surprisingly funny considering it is written by a couple of accountants”. Their third co-authored book, The Price of Fish: A New Approach to Wicked Economics and Better Decisions, based on his Gresham lectures, won the 2012 Independent Publisher Book Awards Finance, Investment & Economics Gold Prize. Michael plays bagpipes, loves skiing and sailing and, with his wife, Elisabeth, he races and restores the 1923 Thames Sailing Barge Lady Daphne and sits on the world’s oldest sailing racing body, the Thames Match Committee. With an international family, Michael speaks English, German, French and Italian poorly, but even worse Spanish and Chinese.

To access all of Professor Mainelli's previous Gresham College lectures, please click here.

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mark-field-mp

Mark Field was elected as the MP for the Cities of London and Westminster constituency in 2001, and was re-elected with an increased majority in 2005. In the 2010 General Election he was returned to parliament once more having been re-elected in the revised constituency (bearing the same name) with a further increased majority of 11,076. This result took Mark’s share of the vote locally to over 50% for the first time.He takes a special interest in economic matters, foreign trade and international development, and is currently Chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Groups on Venture Capital and Private Equity. He is also Vice Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Groups on Bangladesh and Football.

In September 2010 Mark was appointed by the Prime Minister to the prestigious Intelligence and Security Committee, chaired by Sir Malcolm Rifkind. He is the youngest MP serving on the Committee which oversees and scrutinises the work of Britain’s intelligence services.

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professor-ian-morison

Ian Morison began his love of astronomy when, at the age of 12, he made a telescope out of lenses given to him by his optician. He attended Chichester High School and then went on to study Physics, Mathematics and Astronomy at Hertford College, Oxford. In September 1965, he became a research student at the University of Manchester's Jodrell Bank Observatory. In 1970 he was appointed to the staff of the Observatory and teaches astronomy at the University of Manchester.  

In 1990 he helped found the Macclesfield Astronomy Society which meets at the Observatory and later became president of the Society for Popular Astronomy, the UK's largest astronomical society. He remains on the Society's Council and holds the post of instrument advisor helping members with their choice and use of Telescopes. 

He lectures widely on astronomy, has co-authored books for amateur astronomers and writes regularly for the UK astronomy magazines Astronomy Now and Sky at Night. He also writes a monthly sky guide for the Observatory's web site and produces an audio version as part of the Jodrell Bank Podcast. He has contributed to many television programmes and is a regular astronomy commentator on local and national radio. Another activity he greatly enjoys is to take amateur astronomers on observing trips such as those to Lapland to see the Aurora Borealis and, last year, to Turkey to observe a total eclipse of the Sun.

In 2003 the Minor Planets Committee of the International Astronomical Union named asteroid 15,727 in his honour citing his work with MERLIN, the world's largest linked array of radio telescopes, and that in searching for intelligent life beyond our Solar System in Project Phoenix.

Ian is excited about the prospect of his time as Gresham Professor of Astronomy. He regards it as real challenge and expects it to play a major role in his life for the next three years. He will to give a wide variety of illustrated lectures ranging from how our understanding of the Universe has grown over the centuries to a gentle introduction to Einstein's theory of Gravity - now being tested to extreme accuracy by astronomers at Jodrell Bank.  

He realised that his love of observational astronomy could not easily be covered in the City of London, so has instituted a Gresham Astronomy Weekend at a 'dark sky' location in the Cotswolds which will take place in March each year.

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neal-stephenson

Neal Stephenson is the best-selling author of such novels as Snow Crash, The Diamond Age, Cryptonomicon, and The Baroque Cycle. He is best know for writing science fiction (in the postcyberpunk genre) and his interests often lead him into investigations of society, mathematics, cryptology, currency and the history of science.

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bob-mcdowall

Bob has spoken at numerous industry events and conferences, including Worldwide Exchanges Conference, Sibos and GARP. He has frequently appeared in the press, including the BBC, Bloomberg, CNBC and CNN, and pens a regular column for The Economic Times of India.

Bob’s previous experience includes a Senior Consulting analyst role at Aite Group, where he focused broadly on trading issues in the European marketplace, as they apply not only to those within the capital markets sector, but also within wholesale banking. He covered all asset classes, risk issues and compliance with European regulation, most significantly Basel II, Basel III and MiFID. Before this Bob was a research director at TowerGroup, focusing on the European financial services industry. He is a director and shareholder in Ubicap Group Ltd, a private equity broking and investment company based in Guernsey; and, through UbiCap, an advisor to Alderney Renewable Energy.

Based in the UK’s Channel Islands, Bob holds a law degree (LLB Hons) from University College London, University of London. He is fluent in French and he speaks Russian and Spanish.

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faisal-islam

Faisal Islam is economics correspondent for Channel 4 News, after being business correspondent since May 2004. Prior to this he was economics correspondent at The Observer newspaper.

In 2009 he was named Business Journalist of the Year, and in February 2006 Faisal was named Young Journalist of the Year at the Royal Society of Television awards. He was awarded the Wincott Award for Young Financial Journalist of the Year in 2000, and shortlisted for Young Journalist of the Year at the British Press Awards for 2001.

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professor-avinash-persaud

Avinash Persaud is the founder and Chairman of Intelligence Capital. Prior to founding Intelligence Capital and the GAM Persaud Investment Funds, he was Head of Global Research at State Street Corporation. Previously, he was Global Head of Currency and Commodity Research at JP Morgan. He held the Mercers' Memorial Chair in Commerce at Gresham College between 2002 and 2005, is a Governor of the London School of Economics and a Trustee, a member of the Board of the Global Association of Risk Professionals and the Chair of the CBC Working Group on investment flows. He is the winner of the Institute of International Finance's Jacques de Larosiere Award in Global Finance and an Amex Bank Award as well as a prolific author.

All of Professor Persaud's previous lectures may be accessed here.

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Conference lectures
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Sustainability - The Problem of Time

Professor Ian Morison
Monday, 20 September 2010 - 2:00PM
WATCHED
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Deep Pasts and Deep Futures: What Is The Immediate Relevance Of The Long-Term To Finance?

Professor Ian Morison
Monday, 20 September 2010 - 2:15PM
WATCHED
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Democracy or Markets: Who Can Take The Longer View?

Neil Eckert
Monday, 20 September 2010 - 2:30PM