The Past, Present, and Future of the Federal Reserve System

Friday, December 13, 2013

C-LEAF presented the first of a series of symposiums on the Federal Reserve and the nation’s banking system. The series covered the Fed’s role in setting monetary policy, its influence in the global markets and the economy, and its role as primary supervisor and regulator of the nation’s largest banks and financial institutions.


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7:45–8:45 am: Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:459 am: Welcoming Remarks and Official Launch of Fed Program Series

Formal Announcement of the first online course to be produced on The Federal Reserve and the Nation’s banking system

  • Paul Schiff Berman, Vice Provost, Online Education and Academic Innovation
  • Steven Lerman, Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs, George Washington University  

Introduction of the GW Federal Reserve System historical program series

  • Robert Van Order, Chairman and Professor of Finance, GW Business School
  • Michael Whitehouse, President, Vital Venture Networks, Program Coordinator

9–10:15 am: "The Fed’s Long Journey 1913–2013: Assessing Fed Leadership from Benjamin Strong to Ben Bernanke"

  • Panelists 
    • Liaquat Ahamed, Pulitzer Prize-Winning Author, Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke the World
    • Simon Johnson, Ronald A. Kurtz Professor of Entrepreneurship, MIT Sloan School of Management; former Chief Economist, International Monetary Fund
  • Moderator
    • Arthur E. Wilmarth, Jr., Professor of Law; Executive Director, The Center for Law, Economics & Finance (C-LEAF), George Washington Law School 

10:15–10:30 am: Break

10:30–11:45 am: Featured Interview

"An Insider's View of the Fed from a Former Vice Chairman and Leading Monetary Economist"

Donald L. Kohn, former Vice Chairman, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (2006–2010); Senior Fellow, The Brookings Institution; Member, Bank of England’s Financial Policy Committee.

Mr. Kohn held various senior economics positions within the Federal Reserve from 1970, culminating with his appointment as Fed Vice Chairman in 2006.

Conducted by: David Wessel, Economics Editor, The Wall Street Journal, Economics Editor, author of The New York Times best-selling book, In Fed We Trust

Noon-1:20 pm: Lunch 

1:30–3 pm: Panel

"The Federal Reserve’s Balancing Act: Can the Central Bank Be Both Independent and Accountable to Congress and the Country?"

  • Panelists 
    • Rep. Jim Himes, House Financial Services Committee
    • Susan Phillips, former Governor, Federal Reserve Board of Governors; former Chairman, Commodity Futures Trading Commission; Professor Emeritus, George Washington School of Business
    • Al Broaddus, former President, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond
    • Sarah Binder, Professor of Political Science, George Washington University  
    • Peter Conti-Brown; Academic Fellow, Stanford University Rock Center
  • Moderator
      Robert Van Order, Chairman and Professor Finance, George Washington School of Business

34:15 pm: Panel

"A Global Perspective: The Federal Reserve and Other Central Banks"

  • Panelists 
    • Adam Posen, President, The Peterson Institute for International Economics; Member, Monetary Policy Committee of the Bank of England, 2009–2012
    • Athanasios Orphanides, MIT Sloan School of Management; former Governor, Central Bank of Cyprus; Member the Governing Council of the European Central Bank
    • Nathan Sheets, Global Head of International Economics, Citigroup, Inc.; former Director, Division of International Finance, Federal Reserve Board
  • Moderator
    • Nell Henderson, Editor, Global Central Banks, The Wall Street Journal  

4:15–4:30pm: Closing Remarks

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