Faculties and Research

Portrait of Professor Thorsten Beck

Professor Thorsten Beck

Professor of Banking & Finance

Faculty of Finance


Visit Thorsten Beck

Room BR5083, Bunhill Row


Postal Address

Cass Business School
106 Bunhill Row
United Kingdom


Thorsten Beck joined the Faculty of Finance in September 2013 as professor of banking and finance. Since 2008 he has been professor of economics at Tilburg University in the Netherlands and was the founding chair of the European Banking Center from 2008 to 2013. He is also a research fellow of the Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR). Previously he worked in the research department of the World Bank and has also worked as consultant for – among others - the IMF, the European Commission, and the German Development Corporation. His research, academic publications and operational work have focused on two major questions: What is the relationship between finance and economic development? What policies are needed to build a sound and effective financial system? Recently, he has concentrated on access to financial services, including SME finance, as well as on the design of regulatory and bank resolution frameworks. In addition to numerous academic publications in leading economics and finance journals, he has co-authored several policy reports on access to finance, financial systems in Africa and cross-border banking. His country experience, both in operational and research work, includes Bangladesh, Bolivia, Brazil, China, Colombia, Egypt, Mexico, Russia and several countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. In addition to presentation at numerous academic conferences, including several keynote addresses, he is invited regularly to policy panels across Europe. He holds a PhD from the University of Virginia and an MA from the University of Tübingen in Germany.

Exchange student at Universidad de Costa Rica in 1992 and exchange student at University of Kansas in 1991.


  1. PhD in Economics, University of Virginia, United States, 1999
  2. Diplom in Economics (equivalent to MA), Universität Tübingen, Germany, Jan 1995


German and Spanish; Castilian.


Primary Topics

  • Accounting
  • Banking
  • Corporate Finance

Title of Thesis: ESG Finance

Aug 2015 – Jul 2019

Summary of Research

My research extends to a variety of topics including banking and corporate ESG (Environmental, Social & Governance) policies, development finance and illicit financial flows. My first paper studies firm access to finance and skilled labor demand, while my second paper is a large scale investigation on the existence of universal corporate governance practices. My third paper analyses the effects of depositor activism and I am also working on projects examining the effectiveness of investor engagement, which is funded by the UN Principles for Responsible Investment (UNPRI).

1st Supervisor


  1. Beck, T. and Casu, B. (2017). Preface. ISBN 978-1-137-52144-6.

Chapters (2)

  1. Beck, T. and Casu, B. (2017). European banking: An overview. The Palgrave Handbook of European Banking (pp. 3–24). ISBN 978-1-137-52144-6.
  2. Beck, T. (2015). Europe's banking union: Glass half full or glass half empty? The Challenge of Economic Rebalancing in Europe: Perspectives for CESEE Countries (pp. 162–176). ISBN 978-1-78471-980-7.

Journal Articles (43)

  1. Beck, T. and Behr, P. (2017). Individual versus Village Lending: Evidence from Montenegro. Review of Development Economics . doi:10.1111/rode.12308.
  2. Beck, T., Pamuk, H. and Uras, B.R. (2017). Entrepreneurial Saving Practices and Reinvestment: Theory and Evidence. Review of Development Economics . doi:10.1111/rode.12300.
  3. Beck, T., Chen, T., Lin, C. and Song, F.M. (2016). Financial innovation: The bright and the dark sides. Journal of Banking and Finance, 72, pp. 25–51. doi:10.1016/j.jbankfin.2016.06.012.
  4. Beck, T. and Wagner, W. (2016). Supranational supervision: How much and for whom? International Journal of Central Banking, 12(2), pp. 221–268.
  5. Beck, T. (2016). Regulatory Cooperation on Cross-Border Banking – Progress and Challenges After the Crisis. National Institute Economic Review, 235(1), pp. R40–R49. doi:10.1177/002795011623500114.
  6. Beck, T. (2016). Safeguarding the euro – Balancing market discipline with certainty. Geneva Reports on the World Economy, 2016-February, pp. 100–107.
  7. Beck, T. and Brown, M. (2015). Foreign bank ownership and household credit. JOURNAL OF FINANCIAL INTERMEDIATION, 24(4), pp. 466–486. doi:10.1016/j.jfi.2013.10.002.
  8. Beck, T., Lu, L. and Yang, R. (2015). Finance and Growth for Microenterprises: Evidence from Rural China. World Development, 67, pp. 38–56. doi:10.1016/j.worlddev.2014.10.008.
  9. Arezki, R., Beck, T., Deyoung, R., Duca, J.V., Loungani, P. and Murphy, A. (2015). Conference on housing, stability, and the macroeconomy: International perspectives. Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, 47(S1), pp. 1–11. doi:10.1111/jmcb.12185.
  10. Beck, T. (2015). Discussion of Vandenbussche, Vogel, and Detragiache. Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, 47(S1), pp. 379–381. doi:10.1111/jmcb.12207.
  11. Beck, T., Senbet, L. and Simbanegavi, W. (2015). Financial Inclusion and Innovation in Africa: An Overview. Journal of African Economies, 24, pp. i3–i11. doi:10.1093/jae/eju031.
  12. Beck, T. and Peydró, J.L. (2015). Five years of crisis (resolution) - Some lessons. Geneva Reports on the World Economy, 2015(september), pp. 63–71.
  13. Beck, T. (2015). Cross-border banking and financial deepening: The African experience. Journal of African Economies, 24, pp. i32–i45. doi:10.1093/jae/eju028.
  14. Beck, T., Colciago, A. and Pfajfar, D. (2014). The role of financial intermediaries in monetary policy transmission. JOURNAL OF ECONOMIC DYNAMICS & CONTROL, 43, pp. 1–11. doi:10.1016/j.jedc.2014.04.010.
  15. Beck, T., Lin, C. and Ma, Y. (2014). Why do firms evade taxes? The role of information sharing and financial sector outreach. Journal of Finance, 69(2), pp. 763–817. doi:10.1111/jofi.12123.
  16. Beck, T., De Haan, J. and Deyoung, R. (2014). A conference on postcrisis banking. Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, 46(SUPPL.1), pp. 1–11. doi:10.1111/jmcb.12075.
  17. Beck, T. (2014). Finance, growth, and stability: Lessons from the crisis. Journal of Financial Stability, 10(1), pp. 1–6. doi:10.1016/j.jfs.2013.12.006.
  18. Beck, T., Degryse, H. and Kneer, C. (2014). Is more finance better? Disentangling intermediation and size effects of financial systems. Journal of Financial Stability, 10, pp. 50–64. doi:10.1016/j.jfs.2013.03.005.
  19. Beck, T. (2014). Ireland's banking system - Looking forward. Economic and Social Review, 45(1), pp. 113–134.
  20. Beck, T. and Cull, R. (2014). SME finance in Africa. Journal of African Economies, 23(5), pp. 583–613. doi:10.1093/jae/eju016.
  21. Beck, T. (2014). Finance and growth: Too much of a good thing?: Comments on "financial development and economic growth: Known knowns, known unknowns, and unknown unknowns". Revue d'Economie du Developpement, 22(2HS), pp. 67–72. doi:10.3917/edd.hs02.0067.
  22. Beck, T. (2014). Finance and growth: Too much of a good thing? Revue d'Economie du Developpement, 22(2), pp. 67–73. doi:10.3917/edd.282.0067.
  23. Beck, T. (2013). Finance, growth and fragility: The role of government. International Journal of Banking, Accounting and Finance, 5(1-2), pp. 49–77. doi:10.1504/IJBAAF.2013.058088.
  24. Beck, T., Demirgüç-Kunt, A. and Singer, D. (2013). Is Small Beautiful? Financial Structure, Size and Access to Finance. World Development, 52, pp. 19–33. doi:10.1016/j.worlddev.2013.05.014.
  25. Beck, T. (2013). Bank Financing for SMEs – Lessons from the Literature. National Institute Economic Review, 225(1), pp. R23–R38. doi:10.1177/002795011322500105.
  26. Beck, T., Behr, P. and Guettler, A. (2013). Gender and Banking: Are Women Better Loan Officers?*. Review of Finance, 17(4), pp. 1279–1321. doi:10.1093/rof/rfs028.
  27. Aterido, R., Beck, T. and Iacovone, L. (2013). Access to Finance in Sub-Saharan Africa: Is There a Gender Gap? World Development, 47, pp. 102–120. doi:10.1016/j.worlddev.2013.02.013.
  28. Beck, T., De Jonghe, O. and Schepens, G. (2013). Bank competition and stability: Cross-country heterogeneity. Journal of Financial Intermediation, 22(2), pp. 218–244. doi:10.1016/j.jfi.2012.07.001.
  29. Beck, T., Demirgüç-Kunt, A. and Merrouche, O. (2013). Islamic vs. conventional banking: Business model, efficiency and stability. Journal of Banking & Finance, 37(2), pp. 433–447. doi:10.1016/j.jbankfin.2012.09.016.
  30. Beck, T., Todorov, R. and Wagner, W. (2013). Supervising cross-border banks: theory, evidence and policy. Economic Policy, 28(73), pp. 5–44. doi:10.1111/1468-0327.12001.
  31. Beck, T., Büyükkarabacak, B., Rioja, F.K. and Valev, N.T. (2012). Who Gets the Credit? And Does It Matter? Household vs. Firm Lending Across Countries. The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, 12(1) . doi:10.1515/1935-1690.2262.
  32. Beck, T., Demirgüç-Kunt, A. and Pería, M.S.M. (2011). Bank Financing for SMEs: Evidence Across Countries and Bank Ownership Types. Journal of Financial Services Research, 39(1-2), pp. 35–54. doi:10.1007/s10693-010-0085-4.
  33. Beck, T. and Martinez Peria, M.S. (2011). What Explains the Price of Remittances? An Examination Across 119 Country Corridors. The World Bank Economic Review, 25(1), pp. 105–131. doi:10.1093/wber/lhr017.
  34. BECK, T., LEVINE, R. and LEVKOV, A. (2010). Big Bad Banks? The Winners and Losers from Bank Deregulation in the United States. The Journal of Finance, 65(5), pp. 1637–1667. doi:10.1111/j.1540-6261.2010.01589.x.
  35. Beck, T., Klapper, L.F. and Mendoza, J.C. (2010). The typology of partial credit guarantee funds around the world. Journal of Financial Stability, 6(1), pp. 10–25. doi:10.1016/j.jfs.2008.12.003.
  36. Beck, T. and Martinez Peria, M.S. (2010). Foreign bank participation and outreach: Evidence from Mexico. Journal of Financial Intermediation, 19(1), pp. 52–73. doi:10.1016/j.jfi.2009.03.002.
  37. Beck, T., Demirguc-Kunt, A. and Levine, R. (2010). Financial Institutions and Markets across Countries and over Time: The Updated Financial Development and Structure Database. The World Bank Economic Review, 24(1), pp. 77–92. doi:10.1093/wber/lhp016.
  38. Beck, T. and Hesse, H. (2009). Why are interest spreads so high in Uganda? Journal of Development Economics, 88(2), pp. 192–204. doi:10.1016/j.jdeveco.2008.07.004.
  39. Beck, T., Demirguc-Kunt, A. and Honohan, P. (2009). Access to Financial Services: Measurement, Impact, and Policies. The World Bank Research Observer, 24(1), pp. 119–145. doi:10.1093/wbro/lkn008.
  40. BECK, T., DEMIRGUC-KUNT, A., LAEVEN, L. and LEVINE, R. (2008). Finance, Firm Size, and Growth. Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, 40(7), pp. 1379–1405. doi:10.1111/j.1538-4616.2008.00164.x.
  41. BECK, T., DEMIRGUCKUNT, A. and MAKSIMOVIC, V. (2008). Financing patterns around the world: Are small firms different?☆. Journal of Financial Economics, 89(3), pp. 467–487. doi:10.1016/j.jfineco.2007.10.005.
  42. Beck, T., Ioannidou, V. and Schaefer, L. Foreigners vs. Natives: Bank Lending Technologies and Loan Pricing. Management Science, forthcoming .
  43. Beck, T., Degryse, H., Van Horen, N. and De Haas, R. When Arm’s Length Is Too Far. Relationship Banking over the Credit Cycle. Journal of Financial Economics, forthcoming(forthcoming) .

Working Paper

  1. Silva, A., Beck, T. and Da-Rocha-Lopes, S. Sharing the Pain? Credit Supply and the Real Effects of Bank Bail-ins..

Editorial Activities (5)

  1. Review of Finance, Associate Editor, 2014 – present.
  2. Economic Policy, Editor, 2014 – present.
  3. World Bank Economic Review, Member of Editorial Board, 2012 – 2014.
  4. Journal of Financial Intermediation, Associate Editor, 2010 – present.
  5. Journal of Financial Stability, Member of Editorial Board, 2010 – present.

Media Appearances (16)

  1. EBRD analyses how banksÕ lending techniques affect funding to SMEs over the business cycle. (2014) Balkans.com (website).
  2. When Arm's Length Is Too Far: Relationship Banking Over The Business Cycle. (2014) HispanicBusiness.com (website).
  3. When arm's length is too far: a relationship banking working paper from EBRD Trend. (2014) Only Strategic.
  4. Europe Looks to the ECB to Restore Region's Banks to Health. (2014) Institutional Investor.
  5. Bank of America Seen Entering Side Door of Russia Bank Loan Deal. (2014) Bloomberg.
  6. Bank of America Seen Entering Side Door of Russia Bank Loan Deal. (2014) Global Association of Risk Professionals.
  7. Bank of America Seen Entering Side Door of Russia Bank Loan Deal. (2014) Bloomberg Businessweek.
  8. Bank of America Seen Entering Side Door of Russia Bank Loan Deal. (2014) Washington Post - Bloomberg.
  9. 2 April 2014, Wednesday. (2014) Classic FM - 102.7 FM (South Africa).
  11. Have Blog, Will Travel: Dallas Fed Housing, Stability, and the Macroeconomy Conference. (2013) Before it's news.
  12. Finance and Growth: Too Much of a Good Thing? (2013) naked capitalism.
  13. Finance and Growth: Too Much of a Good Thing? (2013) bullfax.com (website).
  14. Europe-wide stress tests to diagnosis. Who will pay for the treatment? (2013) MMC RTV Slovenija.
  15. The European banking union save the euro? (2013) Forbes Poland.
  16. Finance and growth: Too much of a good thing? (2013) China Economic Information network.