UC Berkeley News
Press Release

UC Berkeley Press Release

Gift to campus will create Coleman Fung Risk Management Research Center

– A new center at UC Berkeley devoted to accelerating the development of new risk management-based business practices and tools is being made possible by a $5 million gift from UC Berkeley alumnus Coleman Fung, CEO and founder of Open Link Financial Inc.

Coleman Fung
Coleman Fung

The new Coleman Fung Risk Management Research Center will be housed within the campus's Institute of Business and Economic Research and draw upon the expertise of an interdisciplinary group of leading UC Berkeley faculty members in fields including economics, engineering, business, technology, energy and the environment.

"When we talk about risk management today, most people would think of the risks originated from trading desks at banks and energy firms, hedge-fund portfolios, insurance companies, corporate treasuries, etcetera," said Coleman. "That's what we do at Open Link today – providing robust risk management solutions to these clients.

"But we must do more in risk management so that we can better leverage its potentials and benefits for a resource-constrained future as major developing economies like China and India continue their rapid pace of economic development. That's why we need to make the investment now. And there is no better place to make that investment than at UC Berkeley, with its leading and diverse resources and its famed interdisciplinary efforts and cooperative spirit.

The gift will create an endowed chair in risk management in the Department of Economics, and the chairholder will serve as director of the center and its activities. Benjamin Hermalin, chair of the economics department, said the new center "will facilitate both cutting-edge research in economic issues and the practical application of that research in a wide variety of markets.

"We are extremely grateful to Coleman Fung for this generous gift, which will put the campus at the forefront of the rapidly evolving field of risk management. With the center's focus on finance and energy markets, it will leverage Berkeley's overall excellence and further strengthen our existing research in key areas pertinent to today's global economy," said Chancellor Robert Birgeneau.

Fung earned his bachelor's degree in industrial engineering and operations research in 1987. He has recently been appointed as a trustee to the UC Berkeley Foundation.  A longtime supporter of the campus, he created an endowment for the Coleman Fung Chair in Financial Modeling in the campus's Department of Industrial Engineering and Operations Research earlier this year. In 2001, he established the Coleman Fung Media Center with a $5 million gift to the new C.V. Starr East Asian Library.