Joint Master of Law and Finance
A unique, intensive three-year programme for students from diverse academic backgrounds
The integrated Law and Finance programme combines the original courses and pedagogy of the Law School and of the School of Management and Innovation into a coherent six-semester programme, one semester of which is devoted to an internship. The programme is designed for students with an excellent undergraduate degree in any field. It is the only joint degree of its kind offered by a single institution in France. The first cohort will commence in September 2018.
Students admitted to the programme follow the curricula of the Master in Economic Law at the Law School and of the Master in Finance and Strategy at the School of Management and Innovation. Christophe Jamin, dean of Sciences Po Law School, and Marie-Laure Djelic, co-dean of the School of Management and Innovation are the academic directors of the programme.
As there are no prerequisites in law or finance, this programme is a unique opportunity for students without prior legal or finance training to access a vast range of career opportunities in business law firms, companies, banks or regulatory bodies. Graduates of the programme are eligible to take the French Bar Exam. This Master’s degree includes Charted Financial Analyst (CFA) certification. Graduates who so wish can therefore also sit the Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF) certified exam.
A response to the increasing complexity of legal and financial concerns
The economy’s growing complexity and the extreme sophistication of financial instruments have intensified the strategic and operational aspects of legal positions. The 2008 banking crisis and its impact on financial regulation have only reinforced this trend. In response to the mounting intervention of public regulators, business law firms have established themselves as experts in the financial sector. They continue to provide legal counsel and tax advisory services to private clients while lobbying domestic and supranational public authorities. They often advise public entities on financial transactions involving public/private partnerships. And of course they still assist their private clients (commercial banks and merchant banks, investment funds, family offices, etc.) in seeking legal and tax authorisations and optimisation.
In this context, market stakeholders are naturally looking for employees who master the technical and strategic aspects not only of business law, but also of financial instruments, financial regulation and financial risk management.
The joint Master’s programme is organised over six semesters, allowing a small group of students (about 15-20 students per year) to take almost all the courses of the Master in Economic Law and the Master in Finance and Strategy. The programme has a major practical component with one of the six semesters devoted to an internship.
The curriculum of the Master in Economic Law is designed to allow all students, including those without prior legal training, to master the required techniques gradually, starting with the most general concepts and moving towards increasingly specialised and concrete sets of regulations from semester to semester. Students spend the first year studying the law’s fundamental principles, basic language and modes of reasoning, so as to acquire or consolidate the general legal knowledge essential for a good understanding of economic law (contract law and civil liability, property law, business law, competition law, private international law, European law, etc.). The second year is a year of specialisation corresponding to distinct career paths and different modes of legal practice.
The Master in Finance and Strategy courses at the School of Management and Innovation combine in-depth technical training to ensure students’ rapid acquisition of professional competence with a strong outlook towards the dynamic developments of the industry. The political, institutional, regulatory, technological and risk management issues associated with current developments in the financial sector are also addressed.
Course outlines (in French on the Law School website):
- First year, semester 1
- Second year, semester 2
- Second year, semesters 3 and 4
- Third year, semester 5
- Third year, semester 6
With their dual expertise, graduates are equipped for high impact careers:
- as business lawyers in international law firms;
- in investment banking, investment funds, asset management, mergers & acquisitions, insurance, strategy consulting, real estate and property management, risk management;
- in financial regulation at national or international level;
- as legal counsel in charge of structuring investment funds for portfolio management firms, private equity funds or investment banks.