History of the Center

The Center for International Financial Services and Markets was founded in 1996 under the name Merrill Lynch Center for the Study of International Financial Services and Markets by Professors Esmeralda Lyn and George Papaioannou with a grant from Merrill Lynch & Co. Drs. Lyn and Papaioannou served as co-directors of the Center until 2002, after which Dr. Papaioannou continued as director of the Center until 2008. The Center was renamed Center for International Financial Services and Markets in 2008. Dr. Anoop Rai succeeded as director and served until 2013, when Dr. Sinan Cebenoyan became director of the Center. In 2015, Drs. Nancy White and Edward Zychowicz served as co-directors until 2019. Since January 2020, Dr. Anoop Rai serves as director and Drs. Dominique Outlaw and Na Wang serve as associate directors.


The Center for International Financial Services and Markets was established to fulfill the following objectives:

  • Promote the study of international financial services and markets with an emphasis on studies of practical relevance.
  • Promote the interaction between professionals and the academic community.
  • Facilitate the interdisciplinary study of financial services and markets by exploring their interaction with other fields such as accounting, marketing, management, information technology, and law.
  • Enrich the educational experience of graduate and undergraduate students in the Frank G. Zarb School of Business.

Areas of Study

  • The globalization process for financial institutions and markets and its economic and managerial consequences.
  • The development and use of various financial services and products in global and national markets.
  • The development and functioning of emerging financial markets.
  • The impact of management, marketing, and accounting on financial services and markets internationally.
  • The impact of law and regulation, and information technology on the development and conduct of financial services and markets internationally.
  • The ethical, cultural, and social issues relevant to global finance.


To fulfill its mission, the Center for International Financial Services and Markets will engage in the following activities:

  • Support – through grants – the research and scholarly activities of faculty in the Center's areas of interest.
  • Encourage and recognize – through awards – student study of issues in global finance.
  • Organize and host conferences, seminars, and workshops.
  • Publish and circulate conference proceedings, seminar papers, and other studies.
  • Publish a newsletter including short articles, viewpoints, and Center-related activities.
  • Establish mutually beneficial relations with other domestic and international institutions with similar objectives.
  • Serve as a resource for research and analysis to business and other related organizations in the New York area.