SECP Discussion Papers

Research papers of the ZNWU Fellows are usually first published as ZNWU Discussion Paper. The Discussion Papers thus contribute to a broad dissemination of our sustainability research. The aim is to receive feedback from the research community that is as diverse as possible and to bring our research to publication maturity.

“Cologne Foreign Exchange.”: Public revisions of expectations as a result of the Herstatt crisis

In 1974, a series of banking crises unsettled many of the world’s largest economies. The most prominent of them, the Herstatt crisis in Germany, sent major shock waves through the nascent global financial system. In retrospective, the crisis marks the beginning of a long trend of discontinuously rising financial instability that culminated in the crisis of 2007/08. In retrospect, the crisis appears to be a prelude or preface, if not the first chapter of a looming era of financialization and banking turbulence. As such, it could have shaped the response of those analyzing and responding to financial fragility. But how did contemporary observers in fact interpret and contextualize the episode? What mark did it leave on professional views and policies on the financial sector? With a focus on Germany, we review an extensive set of contemporary documents to analyze the impact of the 1974 crisis on experts’ expectations towards banks and finance.

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Stress and psychological stress are dominant phenomena in modern Western societies. Recent studies by health insurance companies show that very high stress levels also occur during studies. This can lead to serious illnesses and reduces performance. The analyses show that the stress levels in students are higher than in the “normal population” and that these developments at the Universities of Applied Sciences (UAS) are particularly alarming. Against this background, the Department of Economics at Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences has carried out a pilot project with measures to improve stress management and promote resilience. The measures were scientifically accompanied by quantitative and qualitative methods. The positive effects on the health and performance of the students could be convincingly proven. Since the 2019 summer semester, the new teaching and training elements for resilience have therefore been firmly anchored in the curriculum of the Business Administration B.Sc. program at Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences.

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