Awards for legal works on banking supervision and development banks

Biljana Biljanovska and Freya Carolin Nelson, both of whom obtained their doctorates from Goethe University with theses on business law, have received the Baker McKenzie Prize. Their works deal with the regulation of the European banking system, and the legal aspects of public development banks, respectively. 

Dr. Biljana Biljanovska (left) studied the interactions between legal structure and the regulatory effectiveness of banking regulation in the EU. (Photo: private);  
Dr. Freya Carolin Nelson’s dissertation focused on the commercial law aspects of development banks. (Photo: KfW/Alex Habermehl)

The Baker McKenzie law firm has been awarding prizes for outstanding dissertations and post-doctoral theses written at Goethe University’s Law Faculty since 1988. This year, the selection committee chose two theses in business law for the 2022 Baker McKenzie Prize: The awards went to Dr. Biljana Biljanovska and Dr. Freya Carolin Nelson for their dissertations. Dr. Matthias Scholz, Managing Partner of Baker McKenzie Germany, presented the award at the faculty’s doctoral ceremony, held on May 5, 2023.

“The EU Supervisory and Resolution Framework for Banks: An Inquiry into the Complexity and Instability of Bank Groups” – that is the title of Dr. Biljana Biljanovska’s dissertation. Her thesis supervisor, Prof. Katharina Pistor, professor at Columbia University in New York, says Biljanovska has worked out in a careful and differentiated way the interaction between the legal structure and the regulatory effectiveness of banking regulation in the EU. “Biljana Biljanovska’s work at the European Banking Authority enabled her to examine and shed light on the complex interplay between the structure of banking groups and the legal and regulatory arbitrage techniques they employ, as well as the regulatory responses to the effects of these strategies,” Pistor explains.

Dr. Freya Carolin Nelson’s award-winning dissertation is entitled “Die öffentlichen Förderbanken in Deutschland – Rechtliche Grundlagen, öffentlicher Auftrag und staatliche Absicherung, staatliche Einflussnahme und Kontrolle sowie bankaufsichtsrechtliche Vorgaben” [Public Development Banks in Germany – Legal Basis, Public Mandate and State Protection, State Influence and Control, as well as Regulatory Requirements]. Her thesis supervisor, Prof. Helmut Siekmann of Goethe University’s Institute for Monetary and Financial Stability (IMFS), points out the subject matter’s heterogeneity and complexity: “Public development banks are organized very differently, and each institution has its own legal regime. Working through this comprehensively in legal terms is an extraordinarily demanding task that requires a broad overview of different areas of law, as well as the ability to confidently master difficult individual problems that are interwoven across legal fields.” The author has accomplished this task with flying colors, Siekmannn said. Having received her doctorate, Ms. Nelson has remained true to the topic of her dissertation, and now works at KfW.

“The award, which is endowed with 6,000 euros, is an expression of our close ties with Goethe University and is an important part of our efforts to promote legal talent,” says Dr. Matthias Scholz. Previous award winners now work as university professors, in-house legal counsels, investment bankers, judges and lawyers, among others.

About Baker McKenzie

Complex business challenges require an integrated response across different markets, sectors and areas of law. Baker McKenzie’s client solutions provide seamless advice, underpinned by deep practice and sector expertise, as well as first-rate local market knowledge. Across more than 70 offices globally, Baker McKenzie works alongside our clients to deliver solutions for a connected world.

Publication: Freya Carolin Siekmann: “Die öffentlichen Förderbanken in Deutschland. Rechtliche Grundlagen, öffentlicher Auftrag und staatliche Absicherung, staatliche Einflussnahme und Kontrolle sowie bankaufsichtsrechtliche Vorgaben“ [Public Development Banks in Germany. Legal Basis, Public Mandate and State Protection, State Influence and Control, as well as Regulatory Requirements]. Nomos Verlag, 479 pages (e-book or Pdf) ISBN-13: 9783748913115

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