Universität Bonn

Department of Economics

Information on Thesis supervision and Reference letters

Please find information on organisation, topic search, etc. for Bachelor theses in the following eCampus-folder: Bachelor Thesis Group Hakenes222

Our contingent is often booked out, but nevertheless we would like to supervise more theses, as possible. Therefore, we have tried to streamline the whole organization process. If you would like to write your master thesis (MT) with Prof. Hakenes (or co-workers), follow the steps below. However, it is a basic scheme that you can deviate from if you have good reasons for doing so.

1. Pick a topic.

  • I do not supervise purely empirical work. So the topic should have a strong theoretical component.
  • The topic should be a research question. So rather "Should bank regulation be carried out by the central bank?" as "something with banking regulation". Of course, the title of the work does not necessarily have to be formulated as a question.
  • The topic should be reasonably up-to-date and relevant, and there should be some literature on this topic. Therefore, look for at least one academic paper that addresses your research question. You can also reverse the process and look for an interesting paper, then see which research questions it addresses and then work on this question in your MT as well.
  • The original paper (i) should not be too old (perhaps 5 years maximum), (ii) either published in a good finance or econ journal (see list below), or recited at one of the good conferences. By (ii) one can ensure that the quality is not too bad. But you can also pick a paper freely, if you feel confident about your choice. 
    • Finance-Journals: Journal of Finance (JoF), Review of Financial Studies (RFS), Journal of Financial Economics (JFE), Journal of Financial Intermediaton (JFI), JFQA...
    • Econ-Journals: American Economic Review (AER), Review of Economic Studies (REStud), Econometrica (Ec'a), Quaterly Journal of Economics (QJE), Journal of Political Economy (JPE), Management Science (MS), Economic Journal (EJ),...
    • Conferences: American Finance Association (AFA), American Economic Association, European Finance Association (EFA), Western Finance Association (WFA), Financial intermediation Research Society (FIRS),...
  • The appropriate methodology (theory in the sense of a game-theoretical or micro-economic model) is more important than the field. So rather pick something in Banking Theory or Corporate Finance Theory or Banking Regulation, rather than Asset Pricing.

2. Enter your infomation in this mail. This will ensure that we do not "forget" you. 

3. Preliminary discussion with Prof. Hakenes

  • The preliminary meeting is about one month before the start of the thesis (the registration at the examination office, Prüfungsamt).
  • In this meeting, we discuss your topic and determine a possible title for the work.

4. Start of the thesis, registration at the examination office (Prüfungsamt)

As a potential reader of the thesis, you can think of a fellow student. He/she is also interested in finance, has a solid background, but to understand your topic he may need more information. Of course, that depends on how specific your topic is. Just like an original research article: the content matter, but the article is written also to convery the
content to a reader, and to maximize the number or readers and citations.

5. Interim meeting

  • About three weeks after enrollment: make sure to get an appointment.
  • This is not so much about the structure, but more about how you want to answer or analyze "your" question. How do you want to build your reasoning? What does the reader need to know?
  • There is at least one interim meeting. If problems occur in the MT, we can meet more often.

6. Submission of the work, four months after the filling date.

7. Presentation in the master seminar

  • one week after the official date of submission (all cohort students present on the same day, so you can ask and comment on each other)
  • not relevant for grading,
  • goal: the same as in the work. Bring your fellow students closer to your question. Tell us what you did at work, what other work you used, and what your own contribution is;
  • duration: about 25 minutes plus questions and discussion, not too many slides,
  • for compatibility reasons, please send PDF by email,
  • evaluation of the work soon after this presentation.

If general questions are open, write to hakenes@uni-bonn.de. If specific questions are open, you can just ask them in the preliminary discussion. Important: most aspects of your work are dependent on the specific topic. Every thesis is different. Also important: please ask for the meetings yourself: I will probably not remember to approach you. Also fort he presentation in the master seminar, make sure that we arrange a date, especially if you have plans for the time immediately after your thesis.

We look forward to many interesting master theses!

Dear students,

If you need a reference letter from Prof. Hakenes, please fill in the necessary information in the email template (see link below). We are happy to write a reference letter, but of course it makes sense to request a letter from the lecturer who knows you best. If you need more than one report, even after some time, it probably makes sense to request it from the same professor. Reference letters are basically anonymous and are not handed out, but sent to the addressee. Fill out the form in the language in which you also need the report (English or German).

Best regards,

Hendrik Hakenes

Please fill in the questions in the E-Mail template (and send it without changing the subject/Betreff of the E-Mail). Please make sure that your  browser recognized your standard mail account to open the E-Mail template. 

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