Road Map - Executive Summary

The ECB-CFS research network on "Capital Markets and Financial Integration in Europe" aims at stimulating top-level and policy-relevant research, significantly contributing to the understanding of the current and future structure and integration of the financial system in Europe and its international linkages with the United States and Japan. The present document and associated table establish a "road map" to help guide work under the network. They (i) define the scope of the network, (ii) identify a set of research areas and (iii) highlight concrete issues where new research looks particularly promising and/or necessary. From the "road map", five specific areas, listed below, are considered top priority. These areas will feature as special themes in network workshops, and papers on these topics will receive special consideration for presentation in those workshops.

Work under the network has to fulfil the usual academic standard of being publishable in a peer reviewed journal, while:
(1) dealing with European financial integration, with financial system structures in Europe or with financial linkages between the euro area/European Union, the United States and Japan;
(2) focusing on financial intermediaries, financial markets (including the related settlement infrastructures) or the relationship between finance and the rest of the economy; and
(3) providing a description of/measuring one of the items mentioned under (1) above, explaining driving factors behind these items, discussing obstacles to integration or deriving policy implications on the basis of efficiency or stability considerations.

While the "road map" is geared towards applied and policy-relevant questions, both empirical and theoretical research are important and welcomed.

The three criteria referred to above define a large number of relevant topics, which are summarised in the table. The three top priority areas selected are:

  • Financial systems as risk managers, risk distributors and risk creators;
  • Integration and development of retail financial services and the promotion of innovative firms;
  • Financial modernisation, governance and the integration of the European
    financial system in global capital markets

(The sub-topics referring to these priority areas can be found in the "road map" overview table and in the full version of the document.)