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University of Exeter Business School

Professor Chendi Zhang

Professor Chendi Zhang

Associate Dean for Research and Impact (Business School), Professor of Finance and Director of Exeter Sustainable Finance Centre


 Streatham Court 1.08


Streatham Court, University of Exeter, Rennes Drive, Exeter, EX4 4PU, UK


Chendi Zhang is Professor of Finance and the Director of Exeter Sustainable Finance Centre. He is the Associate Dean for Research & Impact of the University of Exeter Business School. He specialises in sustainable and responsible finance, corporate finance, behavioural finance, and emerging markets.

He began his career working in investment banking in Shanghai. After his PhD from Tilburg University in the Netherlands, he worked as a consultant for the Latin America and Caribbean region of the World Bank in Washington DC. Before joining Exeter, he was a faculty member of Warwick Business School (2007-2019). He has also taught at Cambridge, Sheffield, and Tilburg universities. He is an external examiner for Imperial College Business School.

Professor Zhang's research has been covered by the Economist, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, CNN, CBS and Harvard Law School Corporate Governance Forum, presented at the annual meetings of American Finance Association, Western Finance Association, European Finance Association, SFS Cavalcade and FIRS, and appeared in research/policy paper series of NBER, CEPR, ECGI and World Bank. He has received research funding from the British Academy, Natural Environment Research Council, BNY Mellon, Royal Bank of Canada, and World Bank.

He received "Outstanding MBA Teacher" and “Outstanding Contribution to Postgraduate Programme” teaching awards from Warwick Business School. He acted as a consultant on sustainable investing and emerging markets finance for the World Bank, International Finance Corporation (Washington DC), Robeco SAM (Zurich), JO Hambro, Bank of New York Mellon and Newton Investment Management (London). He held visiting academic appointments at the Universities of Boston, Miami, Tilburg, Beijing Normal, and CUFE (China).


  • PhD Financial Economics (CentER, Tilburg)
  • MRes Finance (CentER, Tilburg)
  • MSc Economics (Tilburg)
  • BSc International Finance (Shanghai Jiao Tong)


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Research interests

Professor Zhang's research interests are in three interconnected areas: sustainable investing, corporate finance, and behavioural finance.

Sustainable Investing

  • Socially responsible investments: performance and fund flows (Renneboog, Ter Horst, Zhang, JCF 2008, JBF 2008, and JFI 2011)
  • Firm systematic risk and valuation of ESG factors: theory and empirical evidence (Albuquerque, Koskinen, Zhang, MS 2019; and Albuquerque, Koskinen, Yang, Zhang, RCFS 2020)
  • Employee satisfaction and stock returns around the world (Edmans, Pu, Zhang, Li, MS forthcoming)
  • Firm temperature sensitivity and mispricing (Cuculiza, Kumar, Xin, Zhang, WP 2023)

Corporate Finance

  • Leveraged buybacks (Lei, Zhang, JCF 2016)
  • Short-term debt around the world: theory and empirical evidence (Sorge, Zhang, Koufopoulos, JMCB 2017)
  • Corporate political activism (Albuquerque, Lei, Rocholl, Zhang, JCF 2020)
  • M&A and innovation (Farida, Fidrmuc, Zhang, WP 2023)

Behavioural Finance

  • Investor myopia and risk taking: experimental evidence (Bellemare, Krause, Kröger, Zhang, EL 2005)
  • Information salience and football betting (Palomino, Renneboog, Zhang, JCF 2009)
  • Gambling sentiment and predictable returns (Chen, Kumar, Zhang, JFQA 2020)
  • Dividend sentiment and payout policy (Kumar, Lei, Zhang, JCF 2022)


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Journal articles

Edmans A, Pu D, Zhang C, Li L (2023). Employee Satisfaction, Labor Market Flexibility, and Stock Returns Around the World. Management Science Abstract.  Full text.
Kumar A, Lei Z, Zhang C (2022). Dividend sentiment, catering incentives, and return predictability. Journal of Corporate Finance, 72, 102128-102128.
Albuquerque R, Lei Z, Rocholl J, Zhang C (2020). Citizens United vs. FEC and corporate political activism. Journal of Corporate Finance, 60, 101547-101547.
Albuquerque R, Koskinen Y, Yang S, Zhang C (2020). Resiliency of Environmental and Social Stocks: an Analysis of the Exogenous COVID-19 Market Crash. The Review of Corporate Finance Studies, 9(3), 593-621. Abstract.
Chen Y, Kumar A, Zhang C (2020). Searching for Gambles: Gambling Sentiment and Stock Market Outcomes. Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, 56(6), 2010-2038. Abstract.
Albuquerque R, Koskinen Y, Zhang C (2018). Corporate Social Responsibility and Firm Risk: Theory and Empirical Evidence (Lead Article). MANAGEMENT SCIENCE, 65(10), 4451-4469.
SORGE M, ZHANG C, KOUFOPOULOS K (2017). Short‐Term Corporate Debt around the World. Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, 49(5), 997-1029. Abstract.
Lei Z, Zhang C (2016). Leveraged buybacks. Journal of Corporate Finance, 39, 242-262.
Goergen M, Renneboog L, Zhang C (2015). Do UK Institutional Shareholders Monitor their Investee Firms?. Journal of Corporate Law Studies, 8(1), 39-56.
Renneboog L, Ter Horst J, Zhang C (2011). Is ethical money financially smart? Nonfinancial attributes and money flows of socially responsible investment funds. Journal of Financial Intermediation, 20(4), 562-588.
Palomino F, Renneboog L, Zhang C (2009). Information salience, investor sentiment, and stock returns: the case of British soccer betting. Journal of Corporate Finance, 15(3), 368-387.
Renneboog L, Ter Horst J, Zhang C (2008). Socially responsible investments: Institutional aspects, performance, and investor behavior. Journal of Banking & Finance, 32(9), 1723-1742.
Renneboog L, Ter Horst J, Zhang C (2008). The price of ethics and stakeholder governance: the performance of socially responsible mutual funds. Journal of Corporate Finance, 14(3), 302-322.
Bellemare C, Krause M, Kröger S, Zhang C (2005). Myopic loss aversion: Information feedback vs. investment flexibility. Economics Letters, 87(3), 319-324.


Renneboog L, Horst JT, Zhang C (2016). Socially Responsible Investment Funds. In  (Ed) A Handbook of Corporate Governance and Social Responsibility, 395-412.  Abstract.
Renneboog L, Horst JT, Zhang C (2012). Money-Flows of Socially Responsible Investment Funds around the World. In  (Ed) Socially Responsible Finance and Investing: Financial Institutions, Corporations, Investors, and Activists, 455-477.  Abstract.
Sorge M, Zhang C (2010). Currency and Maturity Mismatches in Latin America. In  (Ed) The Banking Crisis Handbook, Taylor & Francis, 353-372.
Sorge M, Zhang C (2009). Currency and maturity mismatches in latin america. In  (Ed) The Banking Crisis Handbook, 353-372.  Abstract.

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External Engagement and Impact

External positions

  • Director and Treasurer, Global Research Alliance for Sustainable Finance and Investment (GRASFI)
  • Vice Chair of Research Committee, Chartered Association of Business Schools (CABS)
  • External Examiner for Finance Masters programmes, Imperial College London.
  • Referee for the Journal of Finance, Review of Financial Studies, Management Science, Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Review of Finance, Strategic Management Journal, Journal of International Business Studies, Journal of Corporate Finance, Journal of Financial Intermediation, Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Journal of Banking and Finance, Financial Management, British Journal of Management, Corporate Governance:  International Review, European Economic Review, European Financial Management, European Journal of Finance, Financial Review, Journal of Behavioural Decision Making, Journal of Business Ethics, Journal of Business Research, Journal of Economic Survey, Journal of Financial Services Research, Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, and Journal of International Money and Finance.
  • Editorial Review Board member for the Journal of Business Research.
  • Grant reviewer for the Research Grants Council (RGC) of Hong Kong, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), and German Ministry of Education and Research.
  • Book reviewer for McGraw-Hill Higher Education and Imperial College Press.
  • Director of Avon River Capital (consultancy).
  • External Examiner for PhD thesis at Universities of Manchester, Queen’s and Reading, and EDHEC Business School.

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