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University of Delaware’s Proposed ‘JPMorgan Ph.D.’ Raises Eyebrows

Bank's potential influence has some faculty uneasy about the program


Some University of Delaware faculty are concerned about a proposed Ph.D. program in financial services analytics backed by JPMorgan Chase with a $16.5 million donation.

The bank’s potential influence on both the program and the university itself are causing some to raise questions about how the university will be perceived after this collaboration.

From Bloomberg News:

The biggest U.S. bank may be offered a seat on dissertation committees, and it would advise on faculty for the program, according to Bruce Weber, dean of the university’s Alfred Lerner College of Business & Economics.

While companies and business leaders are frequent donors to universities, at issue is whether JPMorgan would have too much say over the curriculum and research.

The school is training future financial leaders and the bank would offer relevant expertise to them and a pipeline for employment, Weber said.

JPMorgan has a strong presence in the state, with the university working closely with the banking powerhouse since 2009.

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