Weidmann: Productive exchange between Bundesbank and House of Finance ©Uwe Dettmar

Weidmann: Productive exchange between Bundesbank and House of Finance

Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann has given a speech emphasising the good cooperation between the Bundesbank and Goethe University Frankfurt’s House of Finance. In his speech, held on the occasion of the House of Finance’s 10-year anniversary, Mr Weidmann said that the exchange between the two institutions had borne fruit on many levels. He added that, in addition to joint research projects, many PhD students from Goethe University worked as research assistants at the Bundesbank’s Research Centre. Mr Weidmann also said that joint events were held at regular intervals, including talks by prominent figures such as World Bank President Jim Yong Kim or the Managing Director of the IMF Christine Lagarde.

Gaining insights and reviewing existing knowledge

Whether it concerns the “too big to fail” problem, the sovereign-bank nexus or the impact of monetary policy on financial stability, the cooperation between the House of Finance and the Bundesbank provides an opportunity to gain new insights and to deepen and review existing knowledge, Mr Weidmann told his audience. In his speech, the Bundesbank President underlined the importance of the holistic and interdisciplinary approach pursued by the House of Finance. Mr Weidmann said that the global financial crisis of 2008 had provided empirical evidence supporting this approach unexpectedly soon after the institution was founded. Since then, he added, the explicit consideration of the financial industry, its idiosyncracies and its interconnections has been a core project of macroeconomics. Mr Weidmann said that, in retrospect, the founding of the House of Finance seemed almost inevitable.

Increasing understanding among the general public

Former chief economist of the ECB and the Bundesbank, Ottmar Issing, referred in his speech to the need for investment in research institutions such as the House of Finance. Mr Issing said that he wanted research to contribute to comprehensively analysing the reasons for the global financial crisis and to develop concepts that would make the financial system safer in future. To increase understanding among the general public for investments of this kind, it is crucial for researchers to play a role in key debates, said Mr Issing, adding hat this could only be achieved though excellent research.

Hesse’s state premier Volker Bouffier highlighted the special standing the House of Finance had attained in academia over the past few years, and went on to say that he was delighted about the fact that the House of Finance had become such an outstanding think tank, benefiting the economy and society alike. The President of the University, Birgitta Wolff, also underlined the contribution the institution was making to the non-academic world, telling her audience that, over the past ten years since its creation, the House of Finance has established itself as a respected institution when it comes to interdisciplinary financial research, but also as a platform for researchers and the general public to exchange knowledge, stressing that the goal has always been to have an impact in the real world.