The Observatoire de la Finance was set up in response to a question raised in the early 1990s: what is the purpose of financial markets? The report entitled Financial markets: mission impossible?, which was published in 1993, led three years later to the establishment of the Observatoire de la Finance.

Today, the Observatoire de la Finance is a think tank that provides a link between financial techniques and practices and the demands of the common good. In doing so, it endeavours to clarify what is happening, and then investigates why. The Observatoire de la Finance is an independent, apolitical and non-religious body.

The Observatoire’s activities are aimed at:

  • Developing and formulating ideas. The Observatoire engages in inquiry and multidisciplinary diagnosis regarding selected aspects of the economy and finance and their relationship to society.
  • Proposing new leads and views. Following this process of inquiry, the Observatoire compares, tests and refines the various diagnoses and the most promising avenues in consultation with the operators and institutions concerned.
  • Launching a dynamic process to enhance the ethical content of the technical debate.

Over the years, the high standard of its work and its ability to initiate dialogue and collaboration have given the Observatoire benchmark status in the field of financial responsibility and ethics. At a time of growing concern about ethics and sustainability, the Observatoire has acquired a degree of skill and credibility which it plans to develop further and make available to its partners and the general public.