The European Central Bank traineeships

Posted on 2023-08-28

The European Central Bank has launched: PhD Traineeship in Macroprudential Policy and Financial Stability

Please share these opportunities with your students by forwarding the email to relevant departments/professors, alumni networks, posting the vacancies on job portals or printing them out and showcasing them in display windows.

General Information

Type of contract  PhD traineeship

Who can apply?  EU nationals eligible for our traineeship programme

Grant  The trainee grant is €1,940 per month plus an accommodation allowance (see further information section)

Working time  Full time

Place of work  Frankfurt am Main, Germany

Closing date  15.09.2023


Your team

You will be part of the Directorate General Macroprudential Policy and Financial Stability. Our Directorate General has approximately 100 staff providing analysis and policy advice on issues relating to financial stability, non-bank financial intermediation, financial regulation and macroprudential policy.

In particular, we identify and measure systemic risks for banks and non-banks and we develop and assess financial regulation and macroprudential measures. We are looking for PhD trainees to work in the Systemic Risk and Financial Institutions Division, the Market-based Finance Division, the Financial Regulation and Policy Division and the Macroprudential Policy Division.

In the area of systemic risk and financial institutions, we analyse developments in the euro area/EU financial system, including its banking sector, from a systemic risk perspective. We also coordinate the production of the ECB’s Financial Stability Review and we design, assess and propose structural macroprudential policy measures for systemic banks.

In the area of market-based finance, we assess and mitigate systemic risks arising from the activities and behaviour of non-bank financial intermediaries. We also assess financial stability risks in financial markets and coordinate the Directorate General’s market intelligence activities. We enhance understanding of how market-based finance interacts with monetary policy and contribute to the ECB’s work on sustainable finance and climate-related financial stability risks.

In the area of financial regulation and policy, we analyse regulatory policy issues from a financial stability and financial integration perspective. We conduct impact analyses on regulatory developments and we contribute to European and international discussions on regulatory and supervisory issues. We also contribute to the ECB’s work on sustainable finance, non-bank financial intermediation and the digitalisation of money and finance.

In the area of macroprudential policy, we assess country-specific cyclical and structural risks within the financial sector and beyond it, including the household, corporate and real estate sectors. We assess national macroprudential measures to address the identified risks and prepare analyses to inform the activation of macroprudential measures by ECB as envisaged by Art 5 of SSM regulation.

In your role as a PhD trainee, you will be part of a team of approximately 20 members of staff responsible for policy-relevant analysis, model development and the coordination of the ECB’s views on the issues mentioned above. You will work closely with our experts, contributing to projects that are relevant to the division to which you are assigned.

The ECB is an inclusive employer and we strive to reflect the diversity of the population we serve. We encourage you to apply irrespective of age, disability, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, race, religious beliefs, sexual orientation or other characteristics.

Your role

As a PhD trainee in the Systemic Risk and Financial Institutions Division you will:

  • work on analytical projects with the aim of assessing the potential systemic risks spanning real-financial feedbacks, systemic risks emanating from the banking sector, and those stemming from broader threats such as climate change;
  • work empirically with large and complex granular financial datasets, notably supervisory banking data (CoRep and FinRep) as well as credit registers, large exposures data, portfolio holdings data, derivatives data and securities holding data;
  • provide analytical input into the wider policy debate around the banking sector, and its contribution to systemic risk;
  • carry out empirical work spanning topics ranging from risk buildup in the real or banking sector, to financial interconnectedness and contagion.

As a PhD trainee in the Market-based Finance Division you will:

  • work on research projects with the aim of assessing and mitigating systemic risks arising from financial markets and the non-bank financial sector, including those emanating from asset management and insurance activities and from the sector’s role in funding the real economy and its interplay with monetary policy;  
  • work empirically with large granular datasets, such as data on derivatives or securities financing transactions, portfolio holdings data and commercial data on investment funds and financial markets;
  • provide analytical input into the wider policy debate around non-bank financial intermediation, financial markets and systemic risk;
  • carry out work relating to (i) the assessment of climate-related risks to non-bank financial intermediaries and financial markets and (ii) the role of green finance in supporting the transition to a net zero economy and associated policy options.

As a PhD trainee in the Financial Regulation and Policy Division you will:

  • contribute to the assessment of macroprudential and financial regulatory policies and/or financial stability arrangements, including through the use of impact assessments to evaluate the effectiveness of adopted or proposed reforms from a financial stability and financial integration perspective. The assessment may include empirical analysis of the interaction (i) between regulation and banks’ intermediation activities, (ii) between integration and stability, and (iii) between microprudential and macroprudential instruments. Additional issues of interest are (i) sustainable finance, (ii) non-bank financial intermediation, and (iii) the structural transformation of the financial system caused by the development of private digital money (such as crypto-assets and stablecoins) and the underlying technology, together with the role played by private digital money in the wider crypto ecosystem and its linkages with the traditional financial system.

As a PhD trainee in the Macroprudential Policy Division you will:

  • work on analytical projects assessing the transmission and effectiveness of macroprudential policies. This may include empirical analysis of (i) the impact of macroprudential policy on the transmission of monetary policy under different monetary policy regimes and high inflation; (ii) the interplay between macroprudential policy measures; (iii) the conditions for the build-up/release of buffers; (iv) the risk stemming from credit and real estate cycles and (v) the state-dependent impact of changes in capital buffer requirements;
  • work with large granular datasets, such as bank-level and firm-level data, credit register instrument-level data and security-level data.

The position offers you excellent opportunities to develop your potential and become familiar with the Directorate General’s activities by taking part in a variety of tasks and projects, including the Directorate General’s regular work. You will be assigned a supervisor but will be expected to take the initiative and complete projects largely autonomously.

You will be able to attend a wide range of seminars and will have access to the ECB’s library as well as its computing, programming and statistical resources. You will have the opportunity to network and engage with other employees, grow personally and increase your business knowledge. You will be part of a multicultural team that strives for continuous innovation to make a positive impact on the lives of European citizens.

Qualifications, experience and skills

  • a master’s degree and at least two years of PhD studies in finance, economics, statistics, mathematics, physics, engineering, computer science or a related discipline;
  • a strong background in one or more of the following fields: macroeconometrics, financial instruments, institutions and markets, financial sector analysis, financial policy and/or regulation, panel data and time series econometrics, VAR models, DSGE models, numerical techniques, mathematical optimisation models, computational economics, network analysis, banking theory, monetary economics and/or corporate finance;
  • an advanced (C1) command of English and an intermediate (B1) command of at least one other official language of the EU, according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages.


  • experience in working with large granular datasets, combining different data sources and drawing information from complex financial and real sector data;
  • advanced programming skills and knowledge of programming languages and econometric software (e.g. Python, R, MATLAB, C++, Stata, SQL and/or EViews);
  • a good knowledge of at least one of the areas described under “Your role” above.

You are curious and eager to learn, and want to further develop your ability to analyse complex information. You are keen to collaborate with others, pursue team goals and learn from other people’s diverse perspectives. You strive to know and anticipate stakeholder needs, and will signal any need for change and propose alternative solutions.

You are motivated to contribute to the ECB’s mission, to serve the citizens of the EU as a member of a public institution and to work with colleagues from all over Europe. You are keen to be part of our team and to use your skills and competencies to achieve the objectives of this position.

Further information
PhD traineeship of between 3 and 12 months in total.

The earliest starting date will be mid-January 2024 and additional dates will be available throughout 2024.

Other details on the conditions applicable to traineeships at the ECB can be found on our website.

Application and selection process
The recruitment process for this position will include an online interview.

Further information on how to apply is available on our website.

If you are not selected for this position but are still considered suitable, you will be placed on a reserve list for 12 months from the closing date for applications, from which you might be considered for other traineeship positions within the ECB.