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Department of Financial and Management Studies (DeFiMS)

Key facts

  • Ranked 6th in the Guardian University League Table for Business & Management Studies
  • DeFiMS ranked in top 20 (out of 101) for research in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF)
  • The 2014 NSS shows that 96% of our students were satisfied with the overall quality of their course
  • DeFiMS is ranked 4th out of 116 Business and Management departments across the UK
  • 90% of our research was rated as world-leading or internationally excellent/recognized
  • 2013 NSS results show 100% satisfaction score for: "The course is intellectually stimulating" 
  • 2013 NSS results show 100% satisfaction score for: "Staff are good at explaining things"
  • BSc International Management degrees with a focus on China, Japan & Korea, and MENA
  • BSc International Management degrees with language and a year abroad
  • BSc Management 
  • MSc International Management degrees with a focus on China, Japan & Korea, and MENA
  • MSc Finance and Financial Law degree
  • UG Applicant to Place Ratio: 5:1
  • Outstanding achievement awards from key publishers, academic journals and conferences
  • We collaborate with institutions across Europe, North America, Asia, Africa and the Middle East

Department of Finance and Management Studies in UK top 20 for research impact

18 December 2014: Department is ranked 18th out of 101 in the UK for the combination of outstanding and very considerable impact of its research; Department also judged to have had a 50% increase since 2008 in the proportion of it’s published research that is judged to be of ‘world-leading quality.’ Read more...

Our strengths

We are a leading centre for research in finance and management that aims to enhance theoretical and empirical understanding of finance and management in a global context.  Our research combines specialist knowledge of financial and management systems in Asia, Africa and the Middle East with more conventional international analysis of Europe and the Americas. We draw on a long tradition of management research that dates from Edith Penrose’s pioneering work in the 1950’s on the theory of the growth of the firm, large international corporations, oil economies, patents, innovation and economic development, to our present day focus on key topics in international finance and management.

Our BSc and MSc degrees in International Management and Finance and Financial Law draw on our research expertise and offer students a unique opportunity to study a range of finance and management subjects in an international context. Our undergraduate degrees offer the possibility of combining international management with the study of a language, including a year abroad.

BSc International Management (China) Graduate

Bauhinia Chi Har Lam: BS c International Management (China)(year abroad)

SOAS is the best place to study the rising economy of China. The Library has an extensive range of books and journals to keep you informed about China’s past, present and future business environment.

Bauhinia Chi Har Lam, BSc International Management (China) (year abroad)

Read Bauhinia's full assessment...

MSc Finance and Financial Law Graduate

Tariq Islam

Part of the reason I chose SOAS over others is because it offered the Islamic Banking and Finance elective module. This is a one-of-a-kind class and an interesting subject that only SOAS offers. My hope is that the knowledge attained in this class will make me more suited for international corporate jobs that deal with the states that are a part of the Gulf Cooperation Council.

Tariq Islam, MSc Finance and Financial Law

Read Tariq's full assessment...

Our Alumni

Graduates from our BSc, MSc and PhD programmes acquire a thorough understanding of finance and management combined with a strong international focus and the skills needed to work effectively in a global, multicultural and multinational context. They also attain a portfolio of widely transferable skills which employers seek, including: analytical skills; information selection; understanding and interpreting qualitative and numerical data (numeracy); and problem solving. Former graduates of DeFiMS have gone on to professional and management careers in international corporations, consultancy, government and international organisations, as well as research and academic careers at leading universities.

Finance and Management Research seminar series

The DeFIMS research seminar attracts leading scholars from around the globe. Speakers present their latest research in an environment that encourages discussion and debate. Seminars cover a wide range of topics and are usually characterised by a good balance between theoretical and empirical work. 

Seminars take place on Tuesdays 1-3pm in room L67 and are open to both staff members and PhD students.

2014/15 term 1 seminar schedule

Head of Department

Christine Oughton

Welcome to the Department of Financial and Management Studies (DeFiMS). At DeFiMS we are dedicated to research and teaching finance and management from an international perspective. Our research is internationally focused and from day one students are encouraged to develop fresh thoughts on financial and management issues and to think globally. This makes the DeFiMS experience unique.

Professor Christine Oughton

Why Study at DeFIMS?

Our BSc and MSc degree programmes provide theoretical understanding of finance and management that extends beyond conventional analysis of the US and Europe to include specialist knowledge of economies, organisations and businesses in Asia, Africa and the Middle East. This makes for a truly international experience and gives a deeper understanding of global issues in finance and management. That’s why our graduates go on to make a real difference in the world.

  • Develop the skills to make a difference. In order to change the world, you need to
    understand it. A SOAS degree in Finance and Management provides you with a deep understanding
    and a unique international perspective.
  • Choose a degree that suits you. Focus on the fundamental principles and practice of
    international management or tailor your degree for the specialised study of management
    in Asia, the Middle East, or Africa, with the option of studying International Management
    with a language, including a year abroad.
  • Experience high quality teaching. The 2013 National Student Survey shows that 96 per
    cent of our students are satisfied with our teaching of international management - one of
    the highest scores in the university sector.
  • Be in demand. Top employers seek graduates with a world view. A SOAS degree in
    Management will help you to stand out from the crowd.

PhD student profile

Boying Xu

The friendly research atmosphere, extensive library resources and academic training courses will help to stimulate your inspiration, promote your talent, and push yourself to new academic heights.

Boying Xu, PhD Finance and Management

Read Boying's full assessment...

PhD programme

DeFIMS runs a successful PhD programme in Financial and Management studies, which includes research training, supervision by one of our Faculty, and a regular PhD seminar attended by both staff and students. Many of our PhD's now hold academic posts at leading universities throughout the world.

Distance Learning

In addition to over 300 on-campus students, DeFiMS also teaches some 4,000 postgraduates studying for PG Diplomas and MSc degrees by distance learning in over 160 countries around the world.

The Centre for Financial and Management Studies

Business Network Seminars (BUNS)

The Business Network Seminar is an integral part of DeFiMS life for all of our students, postgraduates and undergraduates. Success in building businesses, developing a profession, managing organisations, and understanding the changing environment of business and finance increasingly depends on networking. Week by week, the Business Network Seminars give students an opportunity to do just that -- network with established and rising leaders from firms and organisations of all types.

Seminars take place on Wednesdays 1-3pm in room G51 and are open to all.


Telephone: +44 (0)20 7898 4487
Fax: +44 (0)20 7898 4829\
E-mail: defims@soas.ac.uk