AFAANZ Doctoral Education Network (AFDEN)

Initiated in 2015, the AFAANZ Doctoral Education Network (AFDEN) aims to encourage and help enable the broad offering of a rich suite of doctoral-level subjects suitable for accounting and finance students in their first year of study, leading up to confirmation. Through AFDEN, AFAANZ does not purport to grant degrees or offer any of its own coursework. AFDEN, very much like its European "cousin" EDEN, purely facilitates a co-ordinated network for accounting and finance doctoral education across our region. 

Director

Professor Michaela Rankin and Professor Sumit Lodhia are the co-Directors of AFDEN. The Directors report to the AFAANZ Board.

Core AFDEN Goal

AFDEN aims to facilitate the broad offering of coursework units/subjects relevant to PhD candidates in Accounting or Finance enrolled in Australian and New Zealand universities. The primary aim is to seamlessly facilitate a program providing PhD candidates the opportunity to develop world-class research skills and knowledge, helping to better prepare them to (a) produce high quality dissertations; and (b) enter an academic career path (for those aiming at such a career track).

Core Principles

AFDEN makes a commitment to:

  1. Simplicity of operation: a focus on facilitation and flexibility.
  2. Inclusivity: units are available to PhD candidates across all AFAANZ universities, subject to optimal class size constraints. Units may hosted by any AFAANZ institution.
  3. Devolution: each university, indeed each candidate, decides the extent they wish to participate in the program.
  4. No poaching: students remain enrolled in their home institution.
  5. In-Load teaching: Teaching into AFDEN is appropriately recognised in the hosting university’s workload model where possible.

Course Offerings

AFAANZ calls for applications from academics to nominate and host PhD level coursework units. It is envisaged that in the “steady state” mode of AFDEN, such courses will be approved PhD coursework units (or equivalent) on the books of the host institution. As such, these courses will have a highly “streamlined” recognition as part of the suite offered within AFDEN. We will also consider workshops, in circumstances where courses may not be feasible.

2024 AFDEN Offerings

Finance Theory - presented by Professor Tom Smith

Overview

This course, which is the first in the sequence of doctoral seminars offered in finance, is designed to introduce students to the major models of asset pricing and to rational expectations models.  All of the material is developed from first principles, so there are no formal prerequisites for taking this seminar.  It is assumed, however, that students are familiar with basic microeconomic theory and have a working knowledge of both calculus and matrix algebra.  The outline that follows provides a brief description of the material that is covered in the course.  The course consists of three 2 Day Modules which deal with three broad categories of asset pricing models: single-period static models and discrete time intertemporal models (Module 1), continuous time mathematics, Black Scholes and continuous time models (Module 2) and finally rational expectations models: fully revealing equilibrium, noisy rational expectations equilibrium, the Kyle model, its extensions and future directions (Module 3). 

The class will be online this year with a zoom session 3-5 on Saturday for each module

  • Module 1 Saturday 2nd March

  • Module 2 Saturday 6th April

  • Module 3 Saturday 4th May

Final Exam: Thursday June 13th 2-5pm

Course outline is available HERE.  To register your interest, please contact Tom Smith.
This course will be offered online.

Empirical Finance - presented by Professor Tom Smith

Overview

The purpose of this course is to introduce you to the empirical methods of modern Finance. We do not have time to cover all the topics or papers in the field. However, the subset of topics and papers which we do cover are chosen because they highlight some of the key concepts involved in current empirical work in Finance. Assignments are an important part of this course. In these assignments you will be asked to test some of the models that we study. The idea being to reproduce (or otherwise) the results reported in the studies which we examine. It is felt that that this sort of learning by doing is an integral part of internalizing new ideas and concepts. There will be two assignments in the course. These assignments can be done either individually or in groups but group work is encouraged as this helps to develop a cohort which is very valuable to you as your research career goes forward.  Each group will get a chance to present solutions to the problems in class. This  gives the other students in the class a chance to see how a particular group approached the problems, and also provide members of the presenting group with an opportunity to develop their presentation skills. In addition to the assignments, there will be a closed notes, closed book final exam.

Online with a 3-5 pm Zoom session the Saturday of each module

  • Module 1:  Saturday 27th July

  • Module 2:  Saturday 31st August

  • Module3:   Saturday 28th September

Final Exam: Thurs 7th Nov 2-5pm

Course outline is available HERE.
This course will be offered online. To register your interest, please contact Tom Smith.

 

For more information an any offerings, please contact the course leader by email: afden@theresnoplacelikevienna.com


Assessment

Formal recognition of coursework completion and satisfactory progress in a student’s academic record will be exclusively governed by the rules and regulations specified at their enrolled institution. In those cases in which students take a subject for credit, at the completion of the subject the Director/course instructor will communicate their level of accomplishment to the relevant officer of their university so that it can be formally recognised.

AFDEN Scholars & AFDEN Travel Scholarships

AFAANZ recognise that a critical impediment to the success of AFDEN is the “tyranny of distance” and, particularly, the related issue of nontrivial travel costs. Accordingly, to help overcome this obstacle we have established the “AFDEN Scholar” designation – which, critically, attracts a Travel Scholarship award. The details of these awards are as follows:

  • Each scholarship is up to the value of $1500.
  • The scholarships aim to facilitate the attendance of highly qualified and deeply motivated PhD students whose domicile is some significant distance from the location of the course.
  • Scholarship decisions are made by a sub-committee of AFDEN, chaired by the program Director
  • Awardees will be reimbursed legitimate travel expenditures to attend authorised AFDEN Coursework offerings (by receipt): (a) discount return economy airfares; (b) reasonable hotel costs; (c) reasonable ground transport costs to/from airports.
  • The scholarship application process requires a 1-page submission, emailed to the AFDEN Director, addressing the following: 
  1. Name and contact details
  2. University, program and year of study
  3. Thesis topic
  4. Resources provided by home university, eg PhD related research funding
  5. Whether the applicant is taking the course for credit at their home university
  6. Short outline of why the applicant will benefit from the scholarship opportunity.


We are pleased to advise that the following “named” AFDEN Travel Scholarships are available:

  • Frank Finn AFDEN Travel Scholarships 
    Up to three scholarships will be awarded per annum to students enrolled in either of the finance foundation courses: Finance Theory, Finance Empirical and Research Methodologies.
  • Philip Brown AFDEN Travel Scholarships 
    Up to three scholarships will be awarded per annum to students enrolled in any eligible course.
  • Ray Ball AFDEN Travel Scholarships
    Up to three scholarships will be awarded per annum to students enrolled in any eligible course.
  • Bob Officer AFDEN Travel Scholarships
    Up to three scholarships will be awarded per annum to students enrolled in any eligible course.
  • Tim Brailsford AFDEN Travel Scholarships
    Up to three scholarships will be awarded per annum to students enrolled in either of the finance foundation courses: Finance Theory, Finance Empirical and Research Methodologies.
  • Izan AFDEN Scholarships 
    Up to three scholarships will be awarded per annum to students enrolled in either of the finance foundation courses: Finance Theory, Finance Empirical and Research Methodologies.
  • Ellie Chapple AFDEN Travel Scholarships
    Up to three scholarships will be awarded per annum to students enrolled in either of the finance foundation courses: Finance Theory, Finance Empirical and Research Methodologies.
  • Baljit Sidhu AFDEN Travel Scholarships 
    Up to three scholarships will be awarded per annum to students enrolled in either of the finance foundation courses: Finance Theory, Finance Empirical and Research Methodologies.
  • AIBE AFDEN Travel Scholarships 
    Up to five scholarships will be awarded per annum  to  students  enrolled  in  any eligible course, subject to their chosen area of research being sufficiently linked to the public policy/regulation focus of the AIBE around its 6 nodes (see: http://www.aibe.uq.edu.au/research-engagement )

Structure of Courses

While AFDEN’s underlying philosophy places supreme value on a “face to face” cohort effect, a variety of delivery modes might be used including:     

  • A set of three 2-day modules
  • 1 week intensive (the “EIASM /EDEN”) model
  • Weekend workshops

In some cases, web-based delivery might also be used. Decisions on the mode of delivery and the imposition of any class size caps will made by the course instructor/ host institution.