In September of last year, Paul De Knop, rector of Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), set up a project for a teaching and research chair on the subject of finance seen from an ethical perspective. He put together a multidisciplinary team presided over by Michel Flamée, professor of law at the VUB, and including representatives from the VUB as well as the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB). This team asked me whether I would be prepared to associate myself with the project, and become ultimately the holder of the chair. I, of course, gladly agreed.
The VUB, the Dutch-speaking University in Brussels, is the historical twin of the ULB where I studied, and later taught from 1976 to 1979, before accepting a lecturing position at Cambridge University.
Teaching will take place in English and is envisaged over a period of five years. The submission of theses will be possible from the second year onwards. The initiative is destined to constitute part of the Brussels University Alliance which unites the VUB and ULB in the pursuit of joint projects.
The VUB was kind enough to ask me how the chair should be entitled. I therefore proposed “Stewardship of Finance”, which expresses the idea of finance at the service of the community.
There will be sixty hours of lectures spread over the two semesters, which will be held on Thursdays at 3PM. On five occasions throughout the year, these lessons will be followed by a round table discussion in the early evening presided over by myself and to which Belgium and International panelists will be invited. Other lectures by guest speakers will take place in conjunction with the Chair, on Wednesday evenings at 8PM. Fifty places will be offered for those who wish to enroll to follow the lessons for free without having to sit for exams.
The inaugural “Stewardship of Finance” lecture will take place on Thursday the 4th October 2012 at 3PM.
Kindly translated from the French by Tim Gupwell