Keynote Speaker

Prof. Dr. Sergey Avrutin
Department of Modern Languages, Utrecht University, Netherland

Dr. Sergey Avrutin is a Professor of Comparative Pycholinguistics at the Department of Modern Languages. From 2000 to 2005 he was the program leader of the NWO-sponsored PIONEER research program Comparative Psycholinguistics. His research focuses on normal child language development and language impairment (aphasia) with special emphasis on the syntax-discourse interface and the application of information theory to the analyses of errors in child and aphasic speech as well as special registers (e.g. newspaper headlines, TV commentators, etc.) Among other things, he is a member of the editorial board of Language Acquisition, Journal of Neurolinguistics and has edited a special issue of Brain and Language.

Title of Speech: What Journalists, Children and Individuals with Brain Damage Have in Common: An Information-Theoretic View on Lexical Omissions

Abstract: All three populations mentioned in the title of this abstract exhibit a peculiar property of their linguistic expressions: they omit - optionally - functional categories, such as articles, tense, auxiliary verbs etc. While this fact is well known about small children (e.g. "Tractor go on floor"), or individuals with aphasia (e.g. "Cinderella shoe drop"), it is less often noticed (and investigated) in the writings of journalists. Yet, omission of functional categories, most notably articles, is a conspicuous feature of newspaper headlines in many (not all) languages, for example: ROBBER STEAL REAR COIN.

While the similarity may appear accidental and superficial, a closer investigation reveals regularities behind lexical omissions in all three populations. In my talk, I present a summary of several studies conducted in collaboration with Joke De Lange and Petra Schumacher that range from database analyses to EEG investigation of newspaper headlines in several languages. The model that I present finds its roots in Claude Shannon's Information Theory and explains the observed similarities in terms of information-theoretic notions of entropy of the lexical storage and the channel capacity.

Plenary Speaker

Prof. Dr. Tatiana Ivushkina
English Department No. 3 at MGIMO, Moscow, Russia

Tatiana Ivushkina is a Professor at Moscow State Institute of Foreign Affairs (MGIMO-University), Russia. She got her Candidate degree (PhD) in Philology from Moscow State University for the thesis "Stylization in Modern English Literature Speech Portrayals"and Doctoral degree (advanced PhD) from Moscow State University for the thesis «Socio-linguistic Aspects of English Speech Development (in speech portrayals of the upper classes of Great Britain in the 19-20th c. English Literature)».

Her research interests are social linguistics, stylistics, stylization in speech portrayals, upper-class speech, English & American literature and culture, innovative methods of teaching and intercultural communication. She is an executive secretary and editor of the journal "Philology at MGIMO" and author of articles in refereed journals and international conference proceedings.

Title of Speech: The Upper Classes in Fiction: Some British-American Parallels

Abstract: In the focus of the article is the comparative study of the society code used in the upper classes of Great Britain and the USA. Though claiming to be democratic, free and deprived of class system permeating British society, Americans, nonetheless, assimilated the society code and introduced into it its own cultural characteristics that help identify an American upper class person/character. The study of the American novel by Amor Towles Rules of Civility and the British novels by Julian Fellowes, Jeffrey Archer and Charles Jennings has proved that the society code is shared likewise by British and American upper classes and constituted by a core of verbal and non-verbal characteristics, though, there exist differences in the use of socially marked words determined by American culture. The core of non-verbal 'signs' of the in-group members is made up of the words describing items of clothing and manner of behavior that unambiguously indicate the social status of the speaker. The verbal core includes school identifiers, words denoting drinks (champagne) and adjectives.

Prof. Spyros Spyrou
Athens University of Economics and Business, Greece

Spyros Spyrou, is a Professor of Finance at the Department of Accounting & Finance, Athens University of Economics & Business (AUEB). He is currently the Director of the MSc in Accounting and Finance Programmes, and in the past he has served as a member of the University Senate, as a member of the Deanery, as a Deputy Rector, as the Head of the Department of Accounting & Finance, at the Managing Committee for various Postgraduate courses (MSc in Shipping, Finance, & Management, MBA International, MSc in Accounting & Finance), and as the Erasmus Program coordinator for the Department of Accounting & Finance. In previous administrative posts he has served as the Admissions Tutor for Postgraduate Courses and member of the IT Committee at the University of Durham (Department of Economics & Finance, 1999-2001) and MA Programme Leader and Postgraduate Admissions Committee at Middlesex University Business School (School of Economics) (1997-1999). He has been appointed as a Lecturer at Athens University of Economics & Business in 2001. Before that he was a Lecturer at the University of Durham (UK, 1999-2001) and Middlesex University Business School (UK, 1997-1999). He holds a PhD in Finance from Brunel University (UK) in 1997, an MSc in Business Finance from Brunel University (1993), and a BSc in Economics from the National & Kapodistrian University of Athens (1990).

His research interests are in the area of asset pricing and investor behaviour. He has published in refereed academic journals such as: Journal of Banking & Finance, Journal of Financial Stability, Journal of Business Finance & Accounting, European Financial Management, Journal of Futures Markets, International Review of Financial Analysis, The Manchester School, among others. Research papers have also been presented in numerous international conferences such as the Financial Engineering & Banking Society, European Finance Association, European Financial Management Association, Multinational Finance Society, Money Macro and Finance, British Accounting Association, etc. He is also the author of two books ("Money & Capital Markets" (LA: Greek) and "Introduction to Behavioural Finance" (LA: Greek)), and has published articles in professional journals and newspapers.

His teaching portfolio includes a large number of postgraduate modules (Money & Capital Markets, Financial Engineering, Security Investment Analysis, Portfolio Management, Behavioral Finance, Risk Management & Derivatives) and undergraduate modules (Money & Capital Markets, Investments, Security Valuation and Portfolio Management, International Finance, Derivative Markets), taught at the University of Durham, at Middlesex University Business School, and at Athens University of Economics & Business.

Title of Speech: Behavioral Finance and suitability assessment under MIFID II: A Discussion of the New Guidelines

Abstract: According to the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID), financial intermediaries are requested to assess the suitability of the products they sell to clients, particularly in respect of retail clients. The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) in a recent Consultation Paper on Guidelines on certain aspects of the MiFID II suitability requirements (13 July 2017 | ESMA35-43-748) argues that studies have analyzed how the efficiency of the typical tool used by firms to assess the suitability of an investment (the MiFID suitability assessment, i.e. the questionnaire to collect clients' information) may be affected by behavioural biases. I discuss the impact of such human tendencies on the process of financial decision making with a particular reference to the recent ESMA Consultation Paper (ESMA35-43-748), and present some examples of possible relevant questions. I argue that the new guidelines are in the right direction and may have a positive impact in investor protection.