Short Course: Financial Markets for Public Policy Professionals

Restricted to pre-registered WWS students

For over eight years, JRCPPF has offered this popular short course, held before the start of fall classes, to all Woodrow Wilson School MPPs and second-year MPAs, by application only.

The events of the last decade highlight the need for public policy professionals to understand how financial markets operate. However, given the wide range of institutions in global financial markets, the seemingly endless number of instruments in which they deal and the specialized functions they perform, the world of finance can seem impenetrable to those who are not in the industry.

The purpose of this short course is to provide a framework for understanding the operations of financial institutions, the economic purposes they serve and the markets in which they deal.

  • What is a hedge fund?
  • How does it differ from a private equity firm?
  • How do commercial banking and investment banking differ?
  • How are financial markets and institutions regulated?
  • How should they be regulated?

These are but a few of the questions policymakers must ask in thinking about financial markets. Violeta Rosenthal, Center Academic Specialist of the JRCPPF, and former senior economist at the World Bank and economics lecturer at Yale University, is the overall coordinator for the course.


Woodrow Wilson School | September 5-8, 2018 (Click here for the reading list.)

Understanding the Language of Finance

Wednesday, September 5th, Room 399, Julis Romo Rabinowitz Building
5:30–5:45 pm Dinner (pizza and salad)
5:45–9:00 pm Accounting for Policy Makers, Donal Byard, Zicklin School of Business, Baruch College

Framework for Understanding Financial Markets

Thursday, September 6th, Bowl A17, Julis Romo Rabinowitz Building
8:30–9:00 am Breakfast
9:00 am–12:00 pm Treasury Markets, Charles Jones, Columbia Business School
12:00 –1:00 pm Lunch Break
1:00–5:00 pm Credit Markets (continued), Charles Jones, Columbia Business School
Friday, September 7th, Bowl A17, Julis Romo Rabinowitz Building
8:30 – 9:00 am Breakfast
9:00 am–12:00 noon Mortgages & Derivatives, Michael Johannes, Columbia Business School
12:00–1:00 pm Lunch Break
1:00–3:00 pm Mortgages & Derivatives (continued), Michael Johannes, Columbia Business School
3:00–3:15 pm Coffee break
3:15–5:15pm Financial Crisis, Atif Mian, John H. Laporte, Jr. Class of 1967 Professor of Economics, Public Policy and Finance and Director, JRCPPF, Princeton University

Featured Topics

Saturday, September 8th, Bowl A17, Julis Romo Rabinowitz Building
8:30–9:00 am Breakfast
9:00–10:00 am Municipal Bond Markets, RJ Gallo, Senior Portfolio Manager, Senior Vice President, Head of Municipal Bond Investment Group, Federated Investors, Inc.
10:00–10:45 am Private Equity, David Rubenstein,  Co-Founder and Co-Executive Chairman of The Carlyle Group
10:45–11:00 am Coffee Break
11:00–11:45 am Two to Tango: Private Equity’s Partnership Model, Noah Gottdiener, Chief Executive Officer, President and Chairman of the Board of Duff & Phelps
11:45 am–12:30 am Impact Investment: Leveraging Policy and Investment to Achieve Sustainable Development, Philip Bennett, former First Vice President, EBRD
12:30–1:30 pm  Lunch Break
1:30–2:15 pm Global Economic Prospects, Ashoka Mody, Charles and Marie Robertson Visiting Professor, Princeton University
2:15–3:00 pm Cryptocurrencies and Financial Market Implications, Amber Baldet, Founder & CEO, Clovyr
3:00–3:15 pm Coffee Break
3:15–4:15pm Panel Discussion: Financial Regulation
Aaron Klein, The Brookings Institution
Duncan Jepson, BNY Mellon Investment Management
Kathryn Judge, Professor, Columbia Law School
4:15 pm Wrap-up

For a one-page news summary of the program click here