Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore

Cattolica International

Professor Elena Beccalli appointed as 9th Rector of Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore: a historic milestone and her vision for the future

Elena Beccalli will assume the role of Rector of Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore starting today, July 1st 2024, for the next four-year term, 2024-2028. Appointed by the University’s Board of Directors on June 20th 2024, Professor Beccalli succeeds Professor Franco Anelli. She is the first woman to hold this position in the University’s history.

The Board of Directors' decision follows the designation by the University’s faculty on May 22. In the 12 Faculty Councils, Professor Elena Beccalli, Dean of the Faculty of Banking, Finance and Insurance Sciences, received 636 votes out of a total of 685, corresponding to about 93% of the voters.

“Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore is, by its nature, a 'universal' university where dialogue and discussion are open, free, interdisciplinary, and oriented towards creating networks and strategic alliances. It is a university capable of offering – with rigor, creativity, and courage – a contribution of thought to frontier issues, thanks to the coordination of the numerous and qualified initiatives of the academic community,” said Professor Beccalli in thanking the faculty and the Board of Directors that appointed her to lead the University. “Università Cattolica must have the ability to renew itself, implementing a process of innovation that rests on well-established and recognized roots,” she added, “as it is called to be a reference point, with a strong international projection, for quality teaching and research, thereby fostering the virtuous circle typical of a research university while preserving our identity as an educating community.” She continued, “The aim is to ensure that our University is a natural reservoir from which civil society, institutions, the world of work, and not least the Italian and universal Church can draw. A model that can represent the best university ‘for’ the world.” Looking to the future of academic programs, Professor Beccalli highlighted that “the recognition of the quality of the educational offer will focus, with a long-term perspective, on the value of interdisciplinary hybridization of study paths and the innovativeness required by social and labor market transformations. All of this while prioritizing, in line with our tradition, student care and the enhancement of their study experience in welcoming, beautiful, functional, and technologically advanced spaces.”

Elena Beccalli, 50, is an alumna of Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore. She is the University’s ninth Rector, following predecessors such as founder Father Agostino Gemelli (1921-1959), Francesco Vito (1959-1965), Ezio Franceschini (1965-1968), Giuseppe Lazzati (1968-1983), Adriano Bausola (1983-1998), Sergio Zaninelli (1998-2002), Lorenzo Ornaghi (2002-2012), and Franco Anelli (2013-2024).

A full professor of Economics of Financial Intermediaries in the Faculty of Banking, Finance, and Insurance Sciences, where she has served as Dean since 2014, Elena Beccalli is a research associate at the Centre for Analysis of Risk and Regulation at the London School of Economics (UK), where she has also been a tutorial fellow, lecturer, and visiting professor. She is an academic fellow at the Centre for Responsible Banking & Finance at the University of St Andrews. She has been a visiting professor at the Singapore Institute of Management and the China Center for Economic Research at Peking University.

She is the director of the Research Center on Cooperative Credit at Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore. She is the president of the Italian section of the European Society for Banking and Financial Law (AEDBF). She has been a board member of the Italian Academy of Business Administration (AIDEA) and co-president of the European Financial Management Association. She is co-editor of the Journal of Financial Management, Markets, and Institutions.

She is a member of the Scientific Committee of the Centesimus Annus Pro Pontifice Foundation. She is part of the expert group on socially responsible investments of the Italian Episcopal Conference. She was the coordinator of the project on the document Oeconomicae et pecuniariae quaestiones, promoted by Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore in collaboration with the Archdiocese of Milan. She was a senior expert at the Finance and Humanity Village as part of The Economy of Francesco. She also contributed to the drafting of the document Mensuram Bonam.

Her main areas of scientific interest are the banking sector analyzed from the perspective of industrial organization, with particular attention to technology, efficiency, cooperation, and financial biodiversity. In recent years, her studies have focused on issues of ethics and inclusivity, sustainability, artificial intelligence, and female leadership.