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Project of the 7th Framework Programme launched

On February 22 2008 the collaborative research project

The project is funded by the 7th Framework Programme of the European Commission within the Activity 8.1 "Growth, Employment and Competitiveness in a Knowledge Society - The European Case".

The project team comprises 25 researchers from eight European partner institutions:

The main purpose of FINESS is to get a clear understanding of the implications of ongoing financial market integration in Europe on economic growth, employment and competitiveness, to identify likely future paths of the development and to draw policy relevant conclusions. Several main breakthroughs will be achieved throughout the project. On the macroeconomic level, the role of financial systems and their transmission channels on growth will be explored by innovative and tailor made econometric techniques, taken dynamic interactions between financial, product and labour markets into account. A range of indicators to measure the degree of financial integration will be constructed, and their development in time will be addressed. Moreover, insights into the working of financial institutions will be provided for the microeconomic level from the perspective of heterogeneous agents. Empirical analysis will be done using elaborated econometric methods.

The comparative approach undertaken by FINESS is especially useful to uncover catalysts and bottlenecks in the architecture of financial systems. By investigating unique datasets, the role of the financial structure, i.e. the banking sector, markets for private equity and venture capital, for improving efficiency and sustainable expansion of start ups and established firms is studied. Moreover, the impacts of different degrees of financial integration on the portfolio decisions of households are explored. Other topics are related to the transition period of the New Member States as well as to the gender dimension in turning impulses from the financial system into efficiency and growth. By fulfilling its goals, FINESS will provide in-depth knowledge on the relationship between financial systems and sustainable economic growth in a changing economic environment.

The project's Advisory Committee consists of Prof. Alfred Steinherr (Chairman), Prof. Giovanni Urga (Cass Business School), Prof. Wendy Carlin (University College London), Prof. Doris Neuberger (University of Rostock), Prof. Eric Girardin (Université de la Méditerranée, Aix-Marseille II) and Prof. Anindya Banerjee (Birmingham University). Observers from DG RTD, DG ECFIN, DG MARKT and DG ENTERPRISE of the European Commission will help establishing a continuous dialog between the research team and the European policymakers on the policy relevant findings and conclusions.


Prof. Christian Dreger (DIW Berlin) is the scientific leader of the project and Dr. Tatjana Ribakoff (DIW Berlin)- its Managing Coordinator.

More details on the FINESS project will be posted to the Internet sites of participating institutions and on the homepage of the project, located at