Bankinter Consumer Finance and Universidad Pontificia Comillas give the second Award for Business Ethics Research

Francisco Javier Forcadell, Elisa Aracil and Fernando Úbeda awarded for their contributions to studies about financial services, digitalisation and corporate sustainability.

50 academically rigorous projects were submitted, according to judges: 46 projects in Spain and four in Portugal.

Today in Madrid, Universidad Pontificia Comillas and Bankinter Group’s consumer credit outfit, Bankinter Consumer Finance, handed out the second annual Award for Business Ethics Research.

Francisco Javier Forcadell, Elisa Aracil and Fernando Úbeda were the winners of the second edition of this award ceremony. The judges selected their research project, ‘Redefining Boundaries and Scope in Financial Services Firms: The Complementarity between Digitalisation and Corporate Sustainability Capabilities’  as the best submission.   Their research on financial services, digitalisation and corporate sustainability was chosen due to its high academic quality on the subject of corporate ethics.

According to the award judges, the winning project addresses a crucial subject companies must deal with and manage, offering positive operating proposals clearly applicable to the financial environment. Connecting good corporate governance and sustainability in a digitalised context was a key factor in awarding the highest honour in this contest.

José Félix Gonzalo Camarero was runner-up for his project, El Moral Compliance, una herramienta para la gestión de la ética en la toma de decisiones empresariales (‘Moral Compliance: a tool for managing ethics in business decision-making’). His study provides an in-depth look at underlying or catalysing moral-risk factors in companies to help prevent moral risks and reduce the ethical gap in companies. The judged considered his project an excellent and important article written in a clear, creative and innovative manner.

The second edition in Spain and Portugal

The award ceremony was hosted by Alfonso Sáez, chief executive officer of Bankinter Consumer Finance, and Julio L Martínez, SJ, rector of Universidad Pontificia Comillas.

Bankinter Consumer Finance CEO, Alfonso Sáez, said ‘’It’s makes me proud to see how this award has grown since the first contest, an initiative that has always aimed to demonstrate the importance of ethics and sustainability in the business world. These are values Bankinter Consumer Finance is strongly committed to. Acting ethically is and must be at the heart of our operations; it is a business value that all companies must have’.

According to Julio L. Martínez, SJ, rector of Universidad Pontificia Comillas, ‘the increased submissions in this second edition shows rising interest in promoting ethical behaviour in companies and speaks to the dedication of Universidad Pontificia Comillas to educating undergraduate and graduate students to be committed to ethics and good corporate governance, especially through the work of its Economic and Business Ethics faculty. Furthermore, José Luis Fernández, head of this faculty at Comillas ICADE, pointed out the importance of an award that has successfully reached its second edition. ‘The award confirms the intuition we had about the need to promote theorising and research about business ethics, as a way of achieving fairer organisational practices, more responsible management and a more sustainable economy’.

This second award ceremony attracted a considerable number of contestants. More specifically, 50 research projects eligible under contest rules (articles, books and reports, doctorate theses, and undergraduate or master's dissertations) were submitted.  Furthermore, for the first time, this year’s awards saw the submissions from our Portuguese neighbours.

This year’s judges panel included Alfonso María Sáez Alonso-Muñumer, chief executive officer of Bankinter Consumer Finance; Raquel Azcárraga, head of sustainability at Bankinter; Almudena Rodríguez Beloso, global adviser and former head of corporate social responsibility and environment at Accenture; Inés Gomis Bertrand, managing partner at Temple Asesores; Raúl González Fabre, professor of Business Management and member of the Iberdrola Chair in Economic and Business Ethics at Comillas ICADE; Javier Camacho Ibáñez, business consultant and member of the Chair in Economic and Business Ethics at Comillas-ICADE; Javier Fuertes López, professor of corporate ethics and social responsibility at Comillas-ICADE; Juan Benavides Delgado, professor of communication at Universidad Complutense de Madrid; and Fernando Velasco Fernández, professor at Universidad Rey Juan Carlos and director of the faculty of intelligence services and democratic systems, who were in charge of selecting the first and second-place studies.

Furthermore, José Luis Fernández, head of the Chair in Economic and Business Ethics at Comillas-ICADE (Universidad Pontificia Comillas), acted as the secretary of the judge panel, but did not have a vote.

A joint effort for corporate ethics in the business world

The Awards for Business Ethics Research were created in November 2017 with the partnership agreement entered into between the Chair in Economic and Business Ethics of Universidad Pontificia Comillas and Bankinter Consumer Finance to strengthen and recognise corporate ethics in the business world.

Bankinter Consumer Finance and the faculty members feel that this initiative’s success and positive turnout lies in the search for synergies between academia and the private sector.


About Bankinter Consumer Finance


Bankinter Consumer Finance, Bankinter Group’s wholly-owned consumer credit subsidiary, is one of the credit entities that has experienced the most growth in Spain in recent years on the back of Bankinter’s prudent risk policy. At the end of 2018, it had 1.3 million customers, an 18% increase from a year ago. Its loan book amounted to 2.095 billion euros, up 38% year on year.


About the Chair in Economic and Business Ethics at Comillas-ICADE


The Chair in Economic and Business Ethics is a forum for reflection, debate and research on topics relating to business ethics, social responsibility and corporate civic duties. It is a meeting point for scholars, business owners, managers and other professionals interested in promoting ethical leadership in organisations, within a globally economic context.