Books & Journal Papers

Books and some of the papers I have written for journals and other research groups

Blockchain and the Nature of Money

Co-author Jose Luu

Discussion of the nature of money in the modern world and how it impacts the potential applications of Blockchain/Distributed Ledger technology.

draft available at

La blockchain et la nature de la monnaie

Co-author is Jose Luu

Condensed version of “Blockchain and the Nature of Money” translated into French. Version condensée de “Blockchain and the Nature of Money” traduit en français.


Co-authors — Nigel King, Mark Hornsby & Ian Grigg

This whitepaper extensively researches the subtly complex subject of money and its representation on distributed ledgers. It summarizes business and technical questions related to money and money-related use-cases on distributed ledgers. The paper also explores the lessons learned from cryptocurrencies, evaluates some of their shortcomings, and outlines practical considerations for money representation, particularly with Central Bank-issued Digital Currencies (CBDCs).

Bridging the Gap Between Investment Banking Infrastructure and Distributed Ledgers

Co-Author Anton Semenov

Enthusiasm for blockchain, or the broader family of distributed ledger technologies (DLT), within capital markets is now into its third year. The enthusiasm has manifested itself in numerous pilots, proofs of concept, fintech startups and industry collaborations. Within investment banks, large broker-dealers, and many “buy-side” firms, the enthusiasm has in large part been driven by a combination of heavy demands on IT departments and considerable pressures to cut costs. This paper argues that there is a key factor that has prevented the delivery of any significant working systems within these enterprises; a general tendency to try to fit a solution (blockchain and its derivatives) to problems, rather than trying to understand problems and find the appropriate solutions.

Strategic Technology Risk — Core Systems Replacement

Co-Author Patrick McConnell

Following a number of recent information technology (IT) outages affecting the provision of key services to customers, UK regulators have become worried about the ‘resilience’ of banks’ IT systems environments. Over time, banks develop, purchase and maintain, sometimes, many hundreds of ‘sub-systems’, which, when combined, provide the full range of services to their customers. Any disruption of the most important (or ‘core’) systems will invariably cause serious inconvenience to customers and often require remediation actions to resolve customers’ losses. Because of their sheer size and the complexity of the many internal and external interactions, however, replacing core systems takes many years and is very risky. Because of the enormous risks involved, any decision to undertake a major core systems replacement (CSR) programme must be taken by the board of a firm as part of the firm’s overall technology strategy. This paper discusses the problems of CSR through drawing lessons from three case studies that illustrate the complex risks that can be encountered by boards making such strategic decisions. The paper finally proposes a framework for managing the risks of a CSR programme.

Principles for effective automation in post-trade processing — Part 1: Beware the ‘bot’ army

Principles for effective automation in post-trade processing — Part 1: Beware the ‘bot’ army

Principles for effective automation in post-trade processing: Part 2 — thought experiments for friction-free trade processing

This paper defines two models for trade processing that seek to eliminate the core sources of problems in three areas: trade capture, including trade enrichment; creating and maintaining consensus on the details of a trade; and correctly and consistently generating the trade events that come after execution, including those related to settlement. The first model, ‘T-Instant’, is based on creating a completely centralised and vertically integrated utility for trading, trade processing and issuance of securities. The second is a more distributed model called the ‘Continuous Consensus Model’ where parties to a trade can agree on a data model and data processing model that are combined with the ‘pairing’ rather than the matching of trades. This model allows for the continuous real-time identification of differences and also the sharing of data to help with a consistent view of a trade between all parties involved.

Evidence-Based Management: How to Use Evidence to Make Better Organizational Decisions

Primary authors are Dr. Eric Barends and Professor Denise Rousseau of Carnegie Mellon University. I co-wrote the chapters on using organisational data in decisions making.

Decisions in businesses and organizations are too often based on fads, fashions and the success stories of famous CEOs. At the same time, traditional models and new cutting-edge solutions often fail to deliver on what they promise. This situation leaves managers, business leaders, consultants and policymakers with a profound challenge: how can we stay away from trends and quick fixes, and instead use valid and reliable evidence to support the organization?

In response to this problem, evidence-based management has evolved with the goal of improving the quality of decision-making by using critically evaluated evidence from multiple sources — organizational data, professional expertise, stakeholder values and scientific literature. This book sets out and explains the specific skills needed to gather, understand and use evidence to make better-informed organizational decisions.

Evidence-Based Management is a comprehensive guide that provides current and future managers, consultants and organizational leaders with the knowledge and practical skills to improve the quality and outcome of their decision-making. Online resources include case studies, exercises, lecture slides and further reading.

Front-to-Back : Designing and Changing Trade Processing Infrastructure

publication description Discount code FTBD50 if bought from Risk Books Website
Detailed guide to capital markets infrastructure in banks and related financial institutions. The book is completely hype-free and makes the complex technological concepts easy to understand even to the non-technical reader.
Section 1 — Describes what the infrastructure needs to do
Section 2- The Problems faced by the sector with its infrastructure and analyses the causes of those problems
Section 3 — Describes the various strategies used by banks over three decades to improve their infrastructure including front-to-back re-engineering and simplification programmes.
Section 4 — Describes all the new (and sometimes not so new) ideas for change in capital markets IT including “digital transformation”, blockchain, AI, big, data, robotic process automation and some original models for improvement.
Foreword by Izabella Kaminska of the Financial Times.



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