Wande McCunn

Oxford Law Alumnus

Picture of Wande McCunn

A brief biography of yourself and summary of your career so far

I was born in Nigeria but grew up in Australia. I matriculated in 2011 as a student of Keble College and in 2013 I moved to New College. I graduated with an MSc in Law and Finance, Masters of Philosophy of Law, and a Doctor of Philosophy of Law. I joined the Bank of England in 2017 and worked in the Resolution Directorate. In late 2018, I joined an investment management company called Carmignac. Today, I am a Credit & Equity Financials Analyst.

What led you to decide to undertake the MSc in Law and Finance?

I studied the MSc in Law and Finance (MLF) because it bridged two subject areas that I studied separately as an undergraduate. I had always considered that Law and Finance could and perhaps should be studied together. The MLF was an opportunity to study the two subjects together.

How has your time in Oxford influenced your career path? Have you had the career you planned or has it evolved over time?

 Yes. My time in Oxford was transformational. The frameworks that I learnt have allowed me to chart a course in financial markets. My career was not fully planned and indeed I considered several paths. My objective has been to continue the journey of understanding how Law and Finance interact. So far, I believe that I have been able to work at that intersection. I believe that Oxford opened my eyes and the doors that have been necessary for this objective.

What did you enjoy most when studying at Oxford?

The people and the ideas. It is no understatement to say that Oxford attracts unique minds. The opportunity to learn from and interact with thoughtful minds allowed me to develop a richer understanding of my particular areas of focus - financial regulation and capital structure.

Who was the biggest influence on you when you studied here?

There was more than one person that influenced my time in Oxford. In no particular order, academically I was influenced by Professors Paul Davies, Alan Morrison, John Armour, and Dan Awrey. The structure of my work was particularly influenced by the joint supervision of Paul Davies and Alan Morrison and I steadfastly tried to reconcile lessons from Financial Economics, Financial Regulation, and Corporate Law.

What has been the biggest challenge in your career to date?

My biggest professional challenge is filtering out the noise whilst being a participant in financial markets. This challenge requires me to use the discipline developed during my DPhil and to balance that with the pragmatism required by financial market participants. Ultimately, this is really about time management. Unfortunately, I do not have the time to explore the many interesting topics that arise at work. Instead, I tend explore a broad array of topics and then focus one or two specific sub-topics.

What advice would you give to someone considering coming to Oxford to study in the Law Faculty?

Take the time to understand in detail what interests you the most. Academically, the reading lists are long and unless you are extraordinary I do not think that you can internalise the importance of the many seminal papers that make up the reading lists. However, I suspect that this is by design. The value of the reading lists is to introduce the ideas and to be a reference list that can be returned to in the future. More generally, take the time to get to know and learn from your peers. Oxford attracts unique minds and you should make the most of the opportunity to interact with and learn from them.

What is the one word that sums up Oxford to you, and why?

Home. Academically and emotionally, I connected with Oxford; the place, my fellow students, and the academics.

On this page