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Filene launches Center of Excellence to Advance Data Analytics within credit union system

Dr. Cheri Speier-Pero of Michigan State University named as research fellow

MADISON, WI (September 30, 2020) — Filene Research Institute today launches its Center of Excellence for Data Analytics and the Future of Financial Services and welcomes Dr. Cheri Speier-Pero as its new research fellow.

This three-year research project focuses on applied research to advance the practice of data analytics and prepare credit unions for the future financial services landscape. The research produced within this project will offer an actionable framework for effective approaches to data management and analytics for the larger financial services industry concomitant with ethical practices in the use of consumer data.

The Center will be led by Dr. Cheri Speier-Pero, Ernst & Young professor of accounting and information systems, and associate dean of undergraduate programs at Michigan State University Broad College of Business.

“My core interest and area of expertise is around data and understanding how organizations can organize, structure, and use data to drive business value,” said Dr. Speier-Pero. “This research project will not just be about how to build the technical skills to create models and develop platforms to drive analytics outcomes, but about understanding the cultural and political environments of an organization to influence and successfully implement models in a way that creates value. This reflects my broader vision to help leaders move ideas forward through the implementation of new value-creating technologies and systems.”

The applied research focus of this project will be a key element for credit union leaders, allowing for practical applications of new and novel research findings.

“Dr. Speier-Pero fit our criteria for a research Fellow to lead our vision for this research center—an esteemed domain expert in data, data excellence and the application of data; someone with interest, knowledge and experience in the application of that expertise within the financial services sector; and someone who can interact with and understand the application of their work through the practitioner’s lens, which in this case is the credit union executive,”  said Filene’s EVP + Chief Research and Development Officer George Hofheimer. “Cheri is entering her 23rd year with Michigan State University and we are thrilled to be connected to not only her skillsets but also her vast academic network within this domain.”

Generous support for the Center for Data Analytics and the Future of Financial Services is provided by Alliant Credit Union, America First Federal Credit Union, Kinecta Federal Credit Union, Michigan State University Federal Credit Union, Visa, Inc. and Vizo Financial Corporate Credit Union.

Credit unions and system partners have an opportunity to get involved as part of Filene’s Inner Circle by sponsoring Data Analytics and the Future of Financial Services and contributing to its critical applied research work, much like these strategic partner organizations have.

“We recognize that data and data analytics is critical to the success of not only Kinecta, but all credit unions in the future, and harnessing and utilizing the data credit unions collect to ethically provide enhanced and needed services to members is this industry’s differentiating factor,” said Keith Sultemeier, president and CEO of Kinecta Federal Credit Union. “Through this work with Filene, the data management and analytics competency within the credit union system can be elevated to best in class and lead to greater growth and member financial well-being.”

Through the end of 2020, Filene will launch two more Centers of Excellence focusing on the impacts of financial services on community well-being and the strategic advantages of social responsibility, and best practices in measuring and accelerating innovation and incubation. This rounds out Filene’s research agenda with six research center focus areas. Centers for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Consumer Financial Lives in Transition, and Emerging Technology launched earlier in the year.

“Sponsoring a previous Center of Excellence was extremely rewarding and beneficial for both Visa and credit unions large and small. When we saw data analytics as a focus in Filene’s next generation of research centers, we knew this would be another great opportunity to collaborate and contribute Visa’s breadth of experience to further this important work,” said Doug Leighton, SVP, Head of Community Accounts at Visa. “We look forward to what will come from this effort to uplift credit unions and their ability to serve their communities.”

Dr. Cheri Speier-Pero


About Filene Research Institute

Filene Research Institute strengthens organizations through innovative research and incubation to improve consumer financial well-being. As an independent cooperative finance think tank, Filene’s membership network connects a community of leaders and bright minds to change lives through innovation, truth and cooperation. In addition to delivering cutting-edge, actionable academic research, Filene also provides incubators to test and scale solutions, events to spark organizations into action and advisory services to help accelerate and implement innovation. For more information, visit filene.org and @fileneresearch.

Contacts

Holly Fearing
608.661.3758 | hollyf@filene.org

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