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 CFA Societies Canada Ethics Challenge

The CFA Societies Canada Ethics Challenge embodies the mission of CFA Institute by promoting "the highest standards of ethics, education, and professional excellence." In addition, it focuses on many of the elements of CFA Institute's Future of Finance initiative. Equally as important, it helps prepare those entering the investment profession for the ethical challenges that they will face in the workplace.

The first Ethics Challenge was started by a CFA Society Toronto volunteer in 2014 where three teams, each from a CFA Institute University Affiliation Program in Toronto participated. in 2017, the 12 member Societies hosted the first CFA Societies Canada Ethics Challenge.

The CFA Societies Canada Ethics Challenge is designed to increase students’ awareness of the ethical dilemmas and issues they may face when they enter the investment management industry. Teams consisting of students from finance or business programs (preferably from CFA Institute’s University Affiliation Program) are given an ethics case to analyze and evaluate. Each team then presents its analysis and recommendations, to a panel of judges, selected by the host CFA Society. Following a question and answer period after each team’s presentation, the judges then select a winner. To determine the winning team, the judges use a grading rubric that is based on the identification and understanding of the ethical issues in the case, the recommendations provided, the depth of the analysis, quality of the presentation, and responses to the judges’ questions. This rubric is then used to provide feedback to each team at the end of the competition.

The CFA Societies Canada Ethics Challenge can:

• Improve your professional presentation skills
• Help you gain ethical decision-making experience
• Expose you to real-world ethical dilemmas
• Train you to work with a team
• Extend your professional network

How It Works

Local Competitions will be hosted by a local CFA Society (held in British Columbia, Alberta, Prairies, Ontario, Québec and Atlantic Canada).

A faculty advisor acts as the link between the local host Society and the student team. The faculty advisor assembles the team and guides them throughout the process.

Students will have approximately four weeks to work on the case study provided by the host Society. Teams then present their analysis and recommendations to a panel of judges. The competition is 100% presentation based; which includes: a 10-minute presentation and then 10 additional minutes to respond to questions from the judges.  ​

One winning team from each Local Competition will advance to the CFA Societies Canada Ethics Challenge held in Montreal, QC in early May 2020.

In the national round, students will have three hours to work on a new case and then presentations are given live to a judging panel of CFA charterholders. A reception will follow, where one team is designated the ultimate CFA Societies Canada Ethics Challenge winner!

Teams are judged based on their recommended course of action and their ability to identify the violations to the CFA Institute Code of Ethics & Standards of Professional Conduct​.​

2020 CFA Societies Canada Ethics Challenge - Official Rules / Règles officielles​​​

Participation AgreementEntente de participation


See highlights from the 2019 CFA Societies Canada Ethics Challenge.​

2019-2020 Timeline

October 31, 2019           
Competing universities must confirm participation in the CFA Societies Canada Ethics Challenge with the local host (local CFA Society).
November 30, 2019Registration deadline for students and faculty advisors.
January 2020The host Society will distribute an identical ethics case study to all registered competing universities (four weeks prior to Local Competition).​
January 15, 2020
Competition kick-off with an interactive ethical decision making ​webinar hosted by CFA Institute.​
(all class members invited to participate)
January – February 2020Local Competitions are held throughout the country.

May 01, 2020

2020 CFA Societies Canada Ethics Challenge held in Montreal, QC where finalists from across Canada compete for the national title.​


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