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Master in Financial Risk Management

Welcome to CIFF’s online Master in Financial Risk Management. The Master aims to develop professionals with a deep and comprehensive understanding of regulations and methodologies to manage risk.

To Master is designed meet the raising demand, that especially has emerged after the Financial Crisis, for professionals with efficient ways to anticipate, measure and mitigate risks.


Interested in joining CIFF’s Master in Financial Risk Management? Here is what we offer:

  • A degree in Financial Risk Management from the prestigious University of Alcalá – one of the oldest universities in the world
  • Learning methods with a strong practical focus providing students with 360º view when addressing any issue
  • A strong faculty of knowledgeable professionals teaching core courses in their areas of expertise

We offer you a life changing experience, do you accept the challenge?


The Master in Financial Risk Management has as a main objective to provide participants with a coherent understanding of Financial Risks and equipping the students with and a complete set of tools to manage any challenge in the area along their careers after finishing their Master.

The Master focuses on collaborative learning and participants will be equipped with the skills demanded by corporations in relation to Risk Management, as well as obtaining a comprehensive view of the regulation that is applicable in the disclosure, measurement and control of Financial Risk.. The students will obtain a deeper understanding of why some corporations fail to achieve a top level of Risk Management and which are the best practices adopted by the industry to achieve such level.

Centro Internacional de Formación Financiera (CIFF)

Course Content

  • Financial Markets and Products (6 ECTS)
  • Quantitative and Computational Methods (6 ECTS)
  • Portfolio Management (6 ECTS)
  • International Environment and Global Risks (3 ECTS)
  • Corporate Finance (3 ECTS)
  • International Risk Regulation (3 ECTS)
  • Credit Risk and Credit Derivatives (6 ECTS)
  • Risk Management and Market Risk (6 ECTS)
  • Operational Risk in Banking and Financial Institutions (3 ECTS)
  • Liquidity Risk Management (3 ECTS)
  • Technological Risk (3 ECTS)
  • Enterprise Risk Management (6 ETCS)
  • Final Project: Research Proposal(6 ETCS)


Ignacio Ariño
He holds a Degree in Theoretical Physics and a PhD in High Energy Physics from the Universidad de Barcelona. He holds the Financial Risk Manager accreditation, FRM, from the Global Association of Risk Professionals and he is also a Chartered Financial Analyst. Currently he is a Quantitative Analyts at Santander where he develops models for the valuation of equity derivatives.


Enrique Ascordebeitia
He holds a Degree with Honors in Business Administration from the University of Alcalá and a Master in Quantitative Finance from CIFF. Currently he is pursuing a Doctorate in Economics and Business Administration and he is also a Lecturer at several postgraduate programs. He has been previously a Senior Advisor at ING Nationale Nederlanden and a Researcher at the SUN Microsystems Laboratory of Computational Finance.


Ascension Calvo
She holds a Degree in Economics (Economic Analysis) from the University Complutense and a Master in Quantitative Finance form AFI. She is Responsible for Credit Risk Assessment and Surveillance at the Corporate and Investment Banking Unit of BBVA. She worked before as Risk Analyst of Equity and Exotic Products also for BBVA.


Enrique Castellanos
He holds a Degree in Economics by the Universidad Autonoma de Madrid and the Financial Risk Manager Certification, FRM, by the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP). He is Responsible of Training at Bolsa y Mercados Españoles and has published a number of papers and a book on Options and Futures.


Alvaro Fernandez
He holds a Degree on Economics (Quantitative Theory) by Universidad Complutense. FRM by the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP). Chief Risk Officer at Nmas1. Prior to that he was the Head of the Validation Models Unit at Barclays and Project Manager at The Boston Consulting Group. He has also worked for Ernst & Young in the risk consulting division at New York, for Arthur Andersen as a risk analyst in the risk consulting division and for Citibank as an analyst of the Credit Risk department.


François Friggit
He is an Engineer and Master in International Finance by the Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales, Paris. He is the Head of Quants at Banco Santander. Formerly he had positions in the quantitative area in Paris, London and New York in institutions such as Calyon, Credit Lyonnais and Bankgesellschaft Berlin.


Pedro Gallardo
He holds a Degree in Economics from the Universidad Carlos III and a Master in Risk Management. He is a holder of the Financial Risk Manager certification, FRM, by the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP). He has been Senior Analyst in Operational Risk and a Specialist in Retail Credit risk and currently is the LATAM Portfolio Manager of Retail Credit Risk at BBVA.


Ignacio Olmeda
He holds a PhD in Economics from the University of Alcalá where he is a Professor and the Director of the Laboratory of Computational Finance. He has participated in several projects for the public sector as and has worked as consultant for private companies. He has authored more than one hundred publications, mainly in the area of quantitative and computational Finance and has lectured extensively in Europe, EEUU, Latin America and Asia.


Maria Angeles Romero
She holds a Degree in Economics from the Universidad Complutense, a Postgraduate in Finance and Economics from CEMFI (Bank of Spain), a Master in Quantitative Finance from AFI and an Advanced Programme in International Finance from IEB. She works as Trader of interest rate Volatility at BBVA and previously worked at Santander in the Treasury Division.


Julio Martinez
He is an Engineer in Electronics by the ICAI and a Master in Risk Management by Instituto MEFF. He also holds the Financial Risk Manager certification, FRM, by the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP). Currently he is Managing Director in Santander where he managed hybrid products. He has been a resposible of trading in Credit and Commodities in Santander and a Trader in Interest Rates at BBVA.


Juan Merino
He holds a degree in Economics from the Universidad de Valladolid and a Master in Business Administration. He his Senior Performance and Performance Attribution Analyst at Santander and a Professor in several Business Schools where he teaches Portfolio Management.


Jose Javier Nuñez
He holds a PhD in Mathematics (Statistics and Operations Research) from the Universidad de Granada. He is a Professor of Quantitative Methods at the Universidad de Alcalá. He has authored several publications in the area of econometrics and quantitative methods in Public Economics. He is the Director of the Master in Quantitative Finance at CIFF.


Robert Smith
He holds degrees in Mathematics and Physics by Oxford University, United Kingdom. He worked previously in ABN AMRO as a Quantitative Analyst and currently is the Managing Director and Head of CVA Desk in Santander.


Javier Vaca
He holds Degrees in Business Administration and Computer Sciences from the Universidad de Oviedo and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) by IMD Lausanne, Switzerland. He is currently Managing Director and responsible of Global Risk with Institutional Investors at Santander. He previously held positions at Santander in London and Latin America and also worked as Senior Banker at Financial Institutions Group.


Esther Vegas
She holds a Degree in Mathematics from Universidad Complutense also holds the Financial Risk Manager certification, FRM, by the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP). She is Head of Operational Risk at Barclays. Prior to this she worked in Ernst & Young in the Financial and Commodity Risk Consulting area.


Participant Profile

The Master in Financial Risk Management is open to candidates who want a profound understanding of risks and wish to develop their careers in Risk Management. The Master is aimed both at recent graduates, young professionals as well as managers, who are looking to specialize in Risk Management.

As the Master is online is can be studied from anywhere in the world.


Duration and Schedule


The length of the Master in Financial Risk Management is 9 months beginning the 20th of February 2017.

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As the Master is online, the student can adapt the pace to his/her particular availability, as the learning materials are available 24/7. To facilitate the interaction between students as well as the exchange of ideas collaborative sessions are scheduled several times during the study period.


Tuition Fee

Students who successfully complete the Programme will receive the corresponding Master Degree in Financial Risk Management from the University of Alcalá.

The tuition fee of the Master is 4.900 euros not including the cost of the corresponding certificate from the University of Alcalá


Application Process

The admission process is not subject to a time period, and you are welcome to contact us all year long. In order to begin the application process fill out the Contact Form for the Master, you are interested in. Our Admission Department will contact you with detailed information about how to continue and will resolve any questions you might have, without any commitment.

The admission process can be summarized as follows:



Candidates must fulfil the following criteria:

  • Bachelor degree from an accredited college/university or equivalent
  • High level of English
  • Previous professional experience is not a prerequisite but will be an asset


During the application process you will be asked to facilitate the following documentation:

  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Motivation Letter
  • Copy of your University Degree
  • Copy of your University Transcript
  • Copy of your Passport or national ID
  • Two Letters of Recommendation
  • A scanned passport-sized photo

As part of the application process you will have to complete two online tests:

  • English Test (the test is designed to give an approximate level of a student’s knowledge of English grammar and usage). Duration: approx. 30 minutes. If you have an official TOEFL/IELTS score (C1-level) you are not required to take the English test.
  • Admission Test (the test is designed to determine the student’s skills in areas such as economics, calculation, verbal reasoning, logic, etc.). Duration: approx. 60 minutes. If you have GMAT score of 670+ (or an equivalent GRE score) you don’t need to take the Admission test.

The final step in the admission process is a personal interview, which either will take place onsite at our facilities in Madrid (C / Maria de Molina 27) or via Skype.


Once the steps of the admission process has been completed, your candidacy will be evaluated by the Admission Committee, who will decide if you will be admitted to the Master.

Possible scholarships are granted by the Admission Committee after an evaluation of the candidacy.


Once admitted to the Master you will receive an acceptance letter by email explaining the necessary steps to follow in order to reserve your place in the programme.


Once you have been admitted to the master’s degree, you must pay the deposit, equivalent to 20% of the tuition fee, in order to reserve your place. The payment details are described in the Acceptance Letter that the Admission Department will send to you via email. Once you have received the letter you have 14 days to pay the deposit, otherwise CIFF cannot guarantee you a place in the Master.

CIFF Business School recommends that reservations are made knowing the responsibilities it entails. Your right to withdraw and ask for a refund of the deposit is very limited. You must make a request in writing if you wish to apply for a refund of your deposit, however, normally, the only circumstances, in which we refund the tuition fee deposit, is if a student visa application is refused or in case of extreme illness. In all approved refund cases, CIFF refunds the tuition fee deposit minus an administrative fee of 400 euros.


Once the Accounting Department at CIFF confirms the payment of the deposit, the Admission Department will send the documents needed in order for you to request the legal papers, you might need in order to study in Spain.

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