IÉSEG students win the Inter-University Hackathon 2022 organized by Refinitiv

Refinitiv is one of the world’s largest providers of financial market data and infrastructure. The company provides information, expertise and technology that enable its clients to make trusted and critical decisions about investment, trading and risk. It does this by leveraging rich, easily accessible data to support the use of advanced technologies like AI and machine learning (RPA).

Above all, Refinitiv is one of the main partners of the Master in Banking, Capital Markets & Financial Technology of IÉSEG. This Specialized Master, taught entirely in English, is designed to enhance students’ knowledge of capital markets and, through interactive courses taught by industry experts, provide solid technical skills on financial market security, banking and financial data.

As part of this program, students participated in an Inter-University Hackathon (against the University of Edinburgh), organized jointly with Refinitiv. The project, led by Professor Renaud Beaupain, head of the IÉSEG Finance Department, allows students to finish the year with an interdisciplinary project, which connects the different skills they have acquired throughout the program. The team composed of Hadba Rahali, Zainab Bourrass and Arthur Geens brilliantly won this competition. The team composed of Maxime Loras, Pierre Yaacub and Tony El Jouny came in third place.

During this Inter-University Hackathon, students had the opportunity to increase their use of CodeBook, a Refinitiv application that gives them access to easy-to-use interfaces to learn how to code and apply what they have learned, whether in management, finance, economics, computer science or data science. The students also had access to Refinitiv data. The final goal was to develop a Python application, which, for the winning group, would end up in the catalog of articles in the Refinitiv developer portal.

Each group was judged on the following criteria: collaborating successfully in a cross-cultural team, communicating effectively in English, solving business problems using the concepts of CSR and ethics, proposing creative solutions, building expert knowledge from cutting-edge information, demonstrating expertise on key concepts in their chosen field, formulating strategically appropriate solutions to complex and unfamiliar challenges in their professional fields, proposing an idea that could add real value to Refinitiv’s products, and finally, demonstrating expertise in coding.

For Arthur Geens, this hackathon was a great adventure: « The first step in the hackathon process was exploring all the different topics. We discussed each one to identify the subject that would fit all the team members, as it is important to find an interesting topic for all of us to stay motivated until the end of this intensive hackathon period. We ended up with the choosing ESG, and we decided to focus on the Governance factor and Sovereigns.
The main problem was the lack of information about sovereigns – the only data we could find about it on Refinitiv was its credit rating. So, we tried to solve this by introducing a metric that would define the governance score of a sovereign.
I will long remember winning this hackathon with my team, especially as when we started attending this program, a team member had no prior coding experience and thus learnt all about it only at I֧ÉSEG, and we all succeeded in winning this competition! With my team, we learnt to aim for something ambitious, and even if we hadn’t won, we would have been just as proud of what we achieved. Winning it was ultimately the icing on the cake ».

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