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Yale ICF Conference

The Fintech Transformation Conference

Disruptive Financial Technologies and What They Mean to Society

Friday, Oct 13 2017 at 9:00 am - 7:00 pm EDT

165 Whitney Avenue
New Haven, CT 06511
United States

Fintech is dramatically reshaping human economic life.  It is opening access to markets, investment, and credit.  It is inventing new ways to solve age-old financial problems. It has reduced fees, disintermediated banks, and brought financial services to emerging economies.  How can we best use fintech for the benefit of society, and what unintended consequences should we be concerned with?

Can fintech make the world a better, safer, more humane place?  How can it improve planning, saving, investment, safety, and decision-making?  Can it simplify our lives, improve global living standards, and democratize access to capital? Will it change the way we think and behave?  Will it raise the potential for systemic disruption and social divergence?

The Yale ICF conference will convene thought leaders in finance, technology, and academia to explore fintech’s potential for further reshaping our world.


Conference Agenda


  • Stephen C. Daffron

    Motive Partners
    Conference Organizer/Speaker

    Stephen Daffron has been a fixture in the development and implementation of technology, data, and operational processes in financial services for well over two decades, having served as Chief Executive Officer of Interactive Data and in senior leadership positions at Morgan Stanley, Renaissance Technologies, and Goldman Sachs. Stephen was involved in the creation of the earliest electronic trading systems in the early 1990’s, pioneered the operational processes that allowed an explosive growth in derivatives trading and processing, managed the integration of major acquisitions—including Morgan Stanley’s acquisition of Smith Barney—oversaw the growth of technology and operations that spring-boarded the prime brokerage business, moved to the buy-side to supervise the growth of processing capability at one of the industry’s most successful hedge funds, and then into private equity where he was CEO of one of the most successful deals of 2015, Interactive Data. Stephen served as Head of Operations, Technology and Data at Morgan Stanley, Chief Operating Officer at Jim Simon’s Renaissance Technologies, Managing Director leading Operations and Technology for Global Custody, Securities Processing, and Asset Management at Goldman Sachs, chaired SIFMA’s Operations and Technology committee and served on the board of DTCC, before becoming Chief Executive Officer at Interactive Data. Before his career on Wall Street, Stephen served in various command and staff positions in the U.S. Army. His education includes a B.S. from USMA, MBA MA, M.Ph. and Ph.D. from Yale.

  • William Goetzmann

    Yale School of Management
    Conference Organizer/Speaker

    William N. Goetzmann is the Edwin J. Beinecke Professor of Finance and Management Studies and Director of the International Center for Finance at the Yale School of Management. He is an expert on a diverse range of investments. His past work includes studies of stock market predictability, hedge funds and survival biases in performance measurement. His current research focuses on alternative investing, factor investing, behavioral finance and the art market. Professor Goetzmann has written and co-authored a number of books, including Modern Portfolio Theory and Investment Analysis (Wiley, 2014), The Origins of Value: The Financial Innovations that Created Modern Capital Markets (Oxford, 2005), The Great Mirror of Folly: Finance, Culture and the Crash of 1720 (Yale, 2013) and most recently, Money Changes Everything: How Finance Made Civilization Possible (Princeton, 2016). He teaches portfolio management, alternative investments, real estate and financial history at the Yale School of Management.

  • Marina Niessner

    Yale School of Management
    Conference Organizer/Moderator

    Professor Niessner’s main research interests are behavioral finance, financial social networks, and online media. In her recent work she uses opinions from a social network of investors, to develop a measure of investor disagreement and examine the extent to which different investment philosophies lead to more volatility in the stock market. Some of her other work documents that managers strategically time disclosures to benefit their insider trading, and examines the effects of product market advertising on financial markets. Dr. Niessner received her BA and PhD in Economics from the University of Chicago.

  • Alex Acree

    Fenway Summer Ventures

    Alex brings to Fenway Summer Ventures significant experience advising financial institutions and investment funds and holding senior leadership positions in early-stage companies. Immediately prior to joining the company, Alex was an attorney at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP, where he advised financial institutions on a wide range of legal and regulatory matters in connection with business combinations, reorganizations and capital markets transactions, Dodd-Frank Act implementation, corporate governance and compliance issues. Alex also regularly advised sponsors in connection with the formation and management of private investment funds. Earlier in his career, Acree held a series of senior positions at early-stage companies, with responsibilities including financial modeling, budgeting, business development, strategy, and operations. He is a summa cum laude graduate of Boston College and holds a JD from Yale Law School and an MBA from Yale School of Management, where he focused on corporate finance and operations. While at Yale, Acree was a director of a student clinic that helped to launch a denovo bank to serve financially underserved communities around New Haven, CT.

  • Jeffrey Bandman

    Bandman Advisors

    Jeff Bandman is Founder and Principal of Bandman Advisors. Bandman Advisors is a consulting and advisory practice focused on innovation and regulation in financial services, with special expertise in FinTech and RegTech. Bandman Advisors was formed to bridge the gaps in business, technology and regulatory strategy. Its approach applies his unique blend of market and regulatory experience to solve client business challenges. Previously, Jeff served in four senior leadership roles at the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission from 2014-2017. As the CFTC’s first FinTech Advisor, he was Founding Director and architect of LabCFTC. LabCFTC is the CFTC's new hub for engagement with FinTech innovation – the first established by a U.S. market regulator. He led FinTech and RegTech coordination with domestic and international regulators, chaired an international regulator workstream on post-trade digital innovation, and founded and chaired the CFTC staff FinTech working group. Jeff previously led the CFTC's Division of Clearing and Risk, which oversees most of the world’s largest clearinghouses (CCPs) and clearing members. He led the negotiations resulting in “Clearinghouse Equivalence” with the European Commission. He originally joined the Commission as Special Counsel to Chairman Timothy Massad, and also led the CFTC’s Office of International Affairs. Jeff worked for many years in the financial industry in New York and London. He advised the Futures Industry Association on launching the SEF Tracker data product. As Head of Partnerships & Alliances of LCH’s SwapClear, he devised the innovative CCP Squared partnership program and championed development of the award-winning SMART margin simulator. He also helped design and launch the SwapClear "FCM service" for clearing interest rate swaps through US intermediaries. He was responsible for global arrangements with FinTech vendors, trading platforms, trade repositories, custodians and others in the OTC ecosystem. Mr. Bandman earlier worked on a variety of new market structure and FinTech initiatives in the derivatives industry in New York and London, including LiquidityHub and the Project Rainbow consortium. Before that he and managed Cantor Fitzgerald’s market data business after the events of September 11. Mr. Bandman started his career as an associate at Cravath, Swaine & Moore in New York, and was Americas General Counsel for Prebon Yamane, now part of the ICAP group. He graduated from Yale magna cum laude with honors in History and English, and escorted the Yale Bulldog, Handsome Dan XII, during his graduation ceremony. He has a law degree from Stanford with honors as a member of the “Order of the Coif". He is a five-time Jeopardy! Champion and spent his winnings backpacking around Africa, Asia and Europe

  • Paul Bracken

    Yale University

    Professor Bracken is a leading expert in global competition and the strategic application of technology in business and defense. His research and teaching focus on helping senior management deal with changing business environments and intense uncertainty. Bracken is consistently rated as one of the top executive education teachers in the world, bringing together practical as well as academic perspectives. He is a consultant to private equity funds, accounting, and insurance companies as well as several arms of the U.S. Government.

  • Andy Brown

    Sand Hill East

    From September 2010 to October 2013, Brown served as Group Chief Technology Officer of UBS. From 2008 to 2010 Andy worked as Head of Strategy, Architecture and Optimization at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. From 2006 to 2008 Andy was the CTO of Infrastructure at Credit Suisse. Prior Credit Suisse, Andy was at Merrill Lynch for ten years holding various positions, including roles as Chief Technology Architect, CIO of Direct Markets, and Head of Networks, Market Data and Email. Brown also worked in chemical, oil and telecomms industry prior. He is also founder and advisor of BizTectonics & Street Scale IT LLC, is a board director for Guidewire (GWRE), MoogSoft LTD, CTO Fintech Innovation Lab, and advises CS Technology LLC, Wickr, EXOU, Revolution Credit, Illumio, Lastline, LMRKTS, DA Holdings, PernixData and Zscaler. Recently he was a Director at ServiceMesh which sold to CSC in November 2013. He was a Founder of Desktone which sold to VMware also in November 2013. In addition, Andy was an advisor to Cyvera which sold to Palo Alto Networks in March 2014. Brown holds a BSc. Honors degree in Chemical Physics from University College London.

  • Dan Ciporin


    Dan partners with startups to deliver innovation particularly in the areas of financial technology, ecommerce, and marketplaces. He was the first institutional investor in Lending Club (LC), now a multibillion dollar public company. Dan joined Canaan after serving as Chairman and CEO of, where he took the company public after leading it from zero to over $100 million in revenue in five years and then sold it to Ebay. Prior to that he was Senior VP of MasterCard International running their global debit program. Dan earned an A.B. from Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and an M.B.A. from Yale University.

  • Ronald Coifman

    Yale University

    Ronald.R.Coifman is Phillips professor of mathematics at Yale University. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Geneva in 1965. Prior to coming to Yale in 1980, he was a professor at Washington University in St Louis. Prof. Coifman's recent publications have been in the areas of nonlinear Fourier Analysis, wavelet theory, numerical analysis and scattering theory. Professor Coifman is currently leading a research program to develop new mathematical tools for efficient transcription organization and empirical modeling of observational dynamics, with applications to Economic , Atmospheric , Medical, learning models for risk assessment, classification denoising, and anomaly detection. He was chairman of the Yale mathematics department 1986-89. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the Connecticut Academy of Sciences and Engineering. He received the DARPA Sustained Excellence Award in 1996, and the 1996 Connecticut Science Medal. The 1999 Pioneer award from the International Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics , the National Science Medal 1999, And the Wavelet Pioneer award 2008, 2014 Large Data Analysis Pioneer award SPIEE Defense.

  • Julien Courbe


    Julien Courbe is PwC’s US Asset Management Advisory Leader. He frequently covers technology-enabled business transformations, cost reduction programs, and risk and regulatory solutions. He is responsible for and involved in a wide range of consulting assignments covering technology strategies, core system replacement, performance improvement, merger integration and divestiture, data management as well as organization design. Julien is a published thought leader and frequent speaker on key IT issues and trends within the banking, capital markets, asset management and insurance industries.

  • R.A. Farrokhnia

    Columbia University

    Prof. R.A. Farrokhnia is an award-winning Columbia University faculty, with joint teaching appointments at both Schools of Business and Engineering; he is also a lecturer and Board Member of the Knight-Bagehot Program at Columbia Graduate School of Journalism. He is the Founder and Executive Faculty Director of “Advanced Projects and Applied Research in Fintech” at Columbia ( He is also the founder and managing principal of an Applied Solutions, Data Analytics, and Design DevLab, a new tech ventures launch platform in New York with a focus on fintech, data and enterprise software. His academic endeavors center on innovation in financial services as well as the integration of industrial, operational and business analyses with practical development and deployment of agile, inventive and design-centric engineering solutions. Prior to his current role, he held a variety of professional and leadership positions in finance, buyside, and startups, including in the ventures division of an asset management firm and a FinTech company acquired by NYSE Group. Prof. Farrokhnia has earned both his undergraduate and graduate degrees from Columbia University. He has extensive global professional experience, including long-term residency abroad and fluency in several languages. He collaborates often in numerous capacities with some of the most innovative and successful global companies, and his programs have also been featured in best-selling books and leading publications.

  • Guy Filipeli


    Guy Filippelli is the Founder and CEO of RedOwl - a security startup that enables companies to improve their internal monitoring of digital activity in support of increasingly complex information security and regulatory challenges. Guy was born in Cleveland, Ohio, holds a B.S. in Economics from the United States Military Academy at West Point, and received his B.A. and M.A. in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics from Oxford University, where he studied as a Marshall Scholar. In 2008, he was awarded the National Intelligence Medallion for his work in Iraq. In addition to leading RedOwl, Guy serves as Chairman of the Commit Foundation, a nonprofit helping returning veterans through leadership mentoring workshops and one-on-one transition assistance. RedOwl is based in Baltimore with offices in New York, San Francisco, and London.

  • Rob Heyvaert

    Motive Partners

    Rob Heyvaert is an experienced financial technology executive and entrepreneur, having held senior leadership positions in the world’s leading Financial Technology firms and having founded, scaled and exited two industry-leading global financial services and technology consulting firms. Rob founded Cimad Consultants at age 24, which developed a real-time capital markets settlement engine that became the backbone of European clearing and settlement. Evolving to one of the leading consulting and software firms in Europe, Cimad was sold to IBM, where Rob was appointed global General Manager of Securities and Capital Markets.In 1998 Rob founded Capco, which became a leader in financial technology advisory and execution, serving full financial services value chain with over 3,000 consultants in North America, Europe and Asia.In 2010, Capco was acquired by FIS, the largest provider of transaction processing services to financial institutions in the world. At FIS, Rob became the Corporate Executive Vice President, Global Financial Solutions, responsible for the top 200 largest banks in the US and international business of FIS. As part of the Executive Management Committee of FIS, Rob held corporate responsibility for Enterprise Strategy and was also an executive sponsor for the acquisition of SunGard—one of the largest financial technology acquisitions to date at $9.1 billion.

  • Gregory Laughlin

    Yale University

    Gregory Laughlin has long-standing research interests in econophysics and the technological infrastructure that underpins electronic markets. He is co-founder of FLC Networks, a wireless communication design consultancy, and he is a Professor of Astronomy at Yale University. His recent work includes a forensic deconstruction of the Flash Crash, and a detailed analysis of information transfer between markets in Chicago and New York

  • Sunil Madhu


    Sunil is the founder and CEO of Socure, the leader in real-time online identity verification solutions, a start-up company based in New York City. Sunil is a serial entrepreneur, with several successful transitions through IPO and acquisition. A security architect by profession, he has spent over 20 years innovating identity and access management, addressing hard problems in network and application authentication and authorization. At Socure, Sunil leads an experienced team who is ‘pushing the envelope’ of identity verification, by employing online and social media data for real-time consumer and business authentication. Sunil holds a MS degree in MIS from Glasgow Caledonian University and a BS with Honors in Computer Science from Strathclyde University in the UK.

  • Blythe Masters

    Digital Asset

    Blythe Masters is CEO of Digital Asset, a New York headquartered financial technology company that builds distributed, encrypted straight through processing tools for wholesale financial service providers using distributed ledger technology. She is also Chair of the Governing Board of the Linux Foundation’s open source Hyperledger Project, and Advisory Board Member of the US Chamber of Digital Commerce. Blythe was previously a senior executive at J.P. Morgan which she left in 2014 after a career spanning 27 years, following the successful sale of the bank’s physical commodities business which she built between 2007 and 2014. From 2012, she was also responsible for Corporate & Investment Bank Regulatory Affairs. She was a member of the Corporate & Investment Bank Operating Committee and previously the firm's Executive Committee. From 2004 to 2007, she was CFO of the Investment Bank. Earlier positions included Head of Global Credit Portfolio and Credit Policy and Strategy, Head of North American Structured Credit Products, co-Head of Asset Backed Securitization and Head of Global Credit Derivatives Marketing. Blythe joined J.P. Morgan full-time in 1991, after completing a number of internships at the bank dating back to 1987. From 2012 to 2014, Blythe was Chair of the Global Financial Markets Association (GFMA). From 2008- 2010, she was Chair of the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA). From 2015 to 2016, she was the Chair of the Board of Santander Consumer Holdings Inc. (NYSE: SC). Blythe is co-Chair of the Board of the Global Fund for Women, a member of the Board of Directors of the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, a Board Member of the Feminist Institute, an Advisory Board Member of ID2020, and the former Chair of the Board of the Greater New York City Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Blythe has a B.A. in economics from Trinity College, Cambridge. She is an avid equestrian and lives in New York.

  • Maggie Parent

    Voya Financial

    Maggie Parent is executive vice president, Technology, Innovation and Operations, for Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA), which helps Americans plan, invest and protect their savings — to get ready to retire better. Serving the financial needs of approximately 13.6 million individual and institutional customers in the United States, Voya is a Fortune 500 company that had $11 billion in revenue in 2016. The company had $517 billion in total assets under management and administration as of June 30, 2017. In this role, Parent is focused on driving innovation throughout the company, as well as aligning Voya’s Technology and Operations teams to meet customer needs. Parent also serves on Voya’s Executive Committee. Prior to joining Voya in October 2016, Parent served as managing director, Americas head of Corporate Technology, at Deutsche Bank AG. In this role, she was responsible for delivery of all Finance, Treasury, Risk, Legal and Compliance systems and services for the Americas region. Previously, Parent held the title of managing director at Credit Suisse AG. Parent’s 33-year career also includes serving in a number of leadership roles at Morgan Stanley. During her tenure, she held the title of managing director and chief operating officer, Global Operations, Technology and Data, as well as Morgan Stanley’s chief information officer, Americas, from 2011 to 2013. Among other accomplishments at Morgan Stanley, Parent developed and consolidated technology strategy with regard to innovation, application architecture, decommissioning programs, infrastructure investment and data center strategy. Parent earned a bachelor’s degree in government from Bowdoin College.

  • Dragomir Radev

    Yale University

    Professor Radev teaches courses in Natural Language Processing and Artificial Intelligence and leads the LILY (Language, Information, and Learning at Yale) Lab at Yale University. Professor Radev’s research interests are in Natural Language Processing (NLP), Information Retrieval, Machine Learning, and Artificial Intelligence. He is currently working on lexical semantics, sentiment analysis, question answering, text summarization, deep learning, scientometrics, and dialogue systems, as well as the application of NLP to the humanities, social sciences, and medicine. He has served his research community in several distinguished roles, including secretary of the ACL (Association for Computational Linguistics), co-founder of the North American Computational Linguistics Olympiad (NACLO), and coach of the US team for the International Linguistics Olympiad. He is the author or co-author of nearly 200 publications and the holder of three patents. In recognition of his sustained contributions to NLP and computational linguistics, he was honored with the rank of Fellow by ACM (the Association for Computing Machinery) and Michigan’s Faculty Recognition Award. His research has been funded by a number of sources including NIH, IBM, NSF, DARPA, and IARPA. He obtained his Ph.D. in Computer Science in 1999 from Columbia University and has worked or consulted for a number of major companies, including IBM, Yahoo!, Microsoft, and AT&T.

  • Sally Rocker

    J.C. Flowers & Co.

    Ms. Rocker is a Managing Director & General Counsel and a member of the firm’s Management Committee. Prior to joining the firm in 2000, Ms. Rocker was Of Counsel at O’Sullivan Graev & Karabell, where she represented major financial institutions in their private equity investments. Prior to that, she was an Associate at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom in the Mergers and Acquisitions Group from 1988 to 1996. Ms. Rocker began her career in the business sector, working at Petro Lewis Corporation as an Associate in the Strategic Planning and Treasury Departments. Ms. Rocker serves on the Boards of Directors for AmeriLife Group Holdings and ELMC Group, LLC. She received a B.A. from Brown University, an M.B.A. from Yale University and a J.D. from Stanford University.

  • Olav Sorenson

    Yale School of Management

    Olav Sorenson is currently the Frederick Frank ’54 and Mary C. Tanner Professor of Management and Director of the Core Curriculum at the Yale School of Management, and Professor of Sociology (by courtesy), at Yale University, where he teaches electives on entrepreneurial finance and venture capital, as well as modules on strategy, innovation and organization design. His primary stream of research pertains to economic geography, focusing on how entrepreneurship influences the growth and competitiveness of regions within countries. In particular, he has called attention to some of the unexpected consequences of the fact that social capital plays an important role in entrepreneurial success. Olav’s most recent projects within this stream have been examining whether the availability of venture capital influences regional entrepreneurship and economic growth, and how going to work for a startup affects the future careers of employees. Olav’s secondary streams of research have been on the relationships between basic science and innovation and on how organizations can better learn from their interactions with customers and from their manufacturing experience. In total, he has delivered more than 300 research presentations and has had more than 60 papers published on these subjects, in journals such as the American Journal of Sociology, the American Sociological Review, the Review of Economics and Statistics, Administrative Science Quarterly, Management Science, the Strategic Management Journal, and Research Policy. Olav serves as a Department Editor for the Organizations Department at Management Science, a Deputy Editor at Sociological Science and as the Editor of the SSRN Journal on Entrepreneurship and the Social Sciences. He has also served in editorial positions at eleven other journals. Prior to coming to Yale, Olav Sorenson held the Jeffrey S. Skoll Chair in Technical Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the University of Toronto (2006-2009), where he taught courses on both venture capital and the commercialization of technology. He has also held a professorship in Strategic and International Management at London Business School (2005-2006), associate and assistant professorships of Policy at UCLA (1999-2005), and an assistant professorship in Strategy at the University of Chicago (1997-1999). Olav has also had shorter-term visiting appointments at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, SDA Bocconi, Universidad Carlos III, Melbourne Business School and Singapore Management University. He grew up in South Dakota and received his bachelor’s degree from Harvard College and his master’s and doctoral degrees from Stanford University. He has also received an honorary doctorate from Aalborg University.

  • Gary Stern

    Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis

    Gary Stern was President and Chief Executive Officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis from March 1985 to September 2009. Stern, a native of Wisconsin, joined the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis in January 1982 as senior vice president and director of research. Before joining the Minneapolis Fed, Stern was a partner in a New York-based economic consulting firm. Stern's prior experience includes seven years at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Stern serves on the board of directors of E*TRADE Financial Corporation, S&P Ratings, Ambac Assurance Corporation, the Council for Economic Education (CEE), Hamline University, and the Depository Trust and Clearing Corporation, where he is Lead Director and Chair of the Board Risk Committee. Stern is co-author of Too Big to Fail: The Hazards of Bank Bailouts, published by the Brookings Institution (2004). Stern is a member of the FDIC's Systemic Resolution Advisory Committee. Stern holds an A.B. in economics from Washington University, St. Louis, and a Ph.D. in economics from Rice University, Houston. He formerly served as chair of the board of the Northwest Area Foundation, The Minneapolis Club, and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota. He was also a board member of FINRA, the Dolan Company, Minneapolis College of Art and Design, and ETS. Stern is the recipient of the 2009 Visionary Award from CEE, the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Washington University's College of Liberal Arts in 2010 and the Laureates Award from Rice University in 2017.

  • Michelle Tuveson

    Cambridge Centre for Risk Studies, University of Cambridge Judge Business School

    Dr Michelle Tuveson is Executive Director and a co-founder at the Cambridge Centre for Risk Studies at the University of Cambridge Judge Business School. She brings 20+ years of corporate experience within the technology and consulting sectors to further the development of better risk models for the future. During Dr Tuveson's tenure, the Cambridge Centre for Risk Studies has become a world leading provider of research and thought leadership in scenario-based modeling of multi-disciplinary risks to businesses. Additionally, she leads the Cambridge Chief Risk Officers Council, chairs the Centre's Annual Risk Summits, is an IEEE Standards Committee Member on the General Principles for Artificial Intelligence, and former advisory board member to the World Economic Forum's Global Risk Report. She is a frequent commentator and speaker and her articles have been published in reports such as the Financial Times Special Report on Risk Management, Banking & Financial Services Policy Report (Wolters Kluwer), and Lloyd's Innovation Series on Emerging Risks. She earned degrees from MIT, Johns Hopkins, and University of Cambridge.

  • Paul Walker

    Motive Partners

    Paul Walker is a Brooklyn-based technologist and philanthropist. He advises companies and investors in AI and FinTech, providing organizations with guidance in business, technology, people and product strategy. He is a senior advisor and member of the global advisory council at Motive Partners. Paul spends his philanthropic energies working with organizations that provide opportunity and social capital to young adults through access to education, science, and critical reasoning. Paul retired as a partner from Goldman Sachs in 2015, where he co-headed the firm’s technology division and held roles in risk management and technology. He holds a PhD in Physics from the University of Illinois and a BA in Physics from Cornell University.

  • Patrick Wood

    Kensho Technologies

    Patrick Wood is Head of Academic Research at Kensho Technologies, the leading provider of data analytics to sophisticated financial institutions and critical government agencies. In addition to serving the firm’s commercial and national security clients, Patrick is responsible for Kensho's many collaborations with distinguished academic institutions and research teams worldwide. Patrick Wood joined Kensho from The Advisory Board Company, a global research and technology company based in Washington, DC. Prior to his time in Washington, Patrick was a professor at Boston University. In addition to publishing in peer-reviewed journals, he has delivered lectures and seminars at institutions including the Max-Planck-Institut in Berlin, Oxford University, Yale University, the University of Pennsylvania, and the European University Institute in Florence. He also serves on the Board of Directors for CAIR Coalition, a Washington-based non-profit for immigrants’ rights, and holds a part-time faculty appointment at NYU. Patrick earned a PhD from Princeton University and an undergraduate degree from Oxford University.

  • Paolo Zannoni

    Goldman Sachs

    Paolo Zannoni joined FIAT in1979 as chief of staff of Gianni Agnelli, Chairman of the Board. While at Fiat he was president of the USA and USSR corporate entities. In 1994 Paolo joined Goldman Sachs International in London. He became a partner in 2000. Currently, he is Chairman of the Italian Investment Banking Division and CEO of Goldman Sachs Russia. Paolo also serves as Chairman of Dolce & Gabbana Holding. He received a BA from the University of Bologna and a MPhil in Political Science from Yale.

Additional Information

  • Hotel Information:
    The Omni Hotel

    155 Temple  Street
    New Haven, CT 06511
    Hotel Reservation

    (Details to Come)


Fintech is the future of banking, Sally Rocker ’81, a managing director at J.C. Flowers & Co., said at the Fintech Transformation Conference at Yale SOM on October 13. But that doesn’t mean that traditional banks will be displaced by tech startups.  

“Any bank that doesn’t think of itself as a tech company will be left in the dust,” Rocker said. But, she warned, “there’s a big difference between a tech idea and an enterprise-ready company.”

Rocker was one of the experts from finance, technology, and academia convened for an all-day conference hosted by Yale SOM’s International Center for Finance, examining the state of the financial technology revolution. She spoke on a panel titled “Novel Payment, Investment, and Transfer Mechanisms Challenging States and Institutions.”

Rocker’s comment was echoed by a point made by Michelle Tuveson, executive director of the Cambridge Centre for Risk Studies, in a discussion titled “What Broad Social Risks Has Fintech Created and/or Solved”?

“At the end of the day, fintech companies are relying on traditional banking to do all the back-end processing,” said Tuveson. While the “break things” and “fail fast” models of Silicon Valley make sense in some spaces, they may not work when the retirement savings of millions of people, or the stability of the global economy, is on the line.

One possible model for the future comes from China, said David Pogemiller, vice president of strategy for RedOwl: “In China you have tech-fins—technology companies that have moved into financial services.” Alibaba and Tencent are creating payment platforms that are increasingly impossible to ignore because of their scale. “That type of approach could be coming our way.”

Many panelists noted the critical importance of regulation—though whether policy and compliance frameworks should come first to direct innovation or come later to clean up unintended consequences was fiercely debated. Panelists agreed that regulators should take the long view, ensuring that the rules fit conditions created by all parts of the business cycle—up economies as well as downs.

Yale SOM’s Paul Bracken, an expert in business and military strategy, noted that risks created by fintech spill beyond the bounds of the industry. As recently as the 1990s, cyber weapons, like nuclear weapons, were controlled by a small group of the world’s major states. Both are now in the hands of more unpredictable actors.

“Innovation has a whole new sandbox to play in,” Bracken said. Cyber privateering—an updated form of state-sanctioned, often profit-driven pirate and mercenary activity that continued well into the 19th century—provides world-class hackers with the tools and funding that only nation-states can provide.