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Source Name: CAIA

CAIA Announces the Launch of the Financial Data Professional (FDP) Institute and Designation

First designation in data science for finance industry professionals

Jun 06, 2019   17:51 IST 
Gurgaon, Haryana, India

The Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) Association, the global leader in alternative investment education, is today announcing the formal launch of an entirely new credential designed for financial analysts working alongside data scientists. This new breed of charter holder will carry the Financial Data Professional (“FDP”) credential borne out of a curriculum and exam-based program offered by the FDP Institute.


The FDP designation is a self-study program designed to educate financial professionals about the emerging field of data science and its practical applications in the financial sector. The FDP charter will be granted to individuals who successfully complete prerequisite requirements and pass a high-stakes exam focused on big data, artificial intelligence, and machine learning applications in the financial industry. 


Data scientists and financial professionals are now working side by side, tasked with successfully deploying and using big data and machine learning, but all too often it can seem like these groups are speaking their own languages,” said William J. Kelly, CEO of the CAIA Association. “The FDP Institute has been established to solve this challenge and provide a solid curriculum for financial professionals to gain a deeper working knowledge of data science.”


The FDP Institute is led by Mehrzad Mahdavi, Ph.D., a recognized expert in the transformative role of technology across a wide range of businesses. Heis joined by an accomplished team of finance and technology experts, including Hossein Kazemi, Ph.D., Senior Advisor to the CAIA Association, Kathryn Wilkens, Ph.D., Advisor to the FDP Institute, and Satya Das, CAIA, CFA, Advisor to the FDP Institute, who have developed an extensive curriculum.


Data science is having a transformative effect on the finance industry and having an understanding of these technologies has become a fundamental need for those who want to succeed in this field over the long term,” said Dr. Mahdavi.Data-driven decision making is no longer on the horizon. It is here, and we’ve designed the FDP program to help professionals stay competitive as the rate of change only continues to increase.”


An advisory board and curriculum committee, comprised of global leaders in the data science space within the financial services industry, oversees the FDP curriculum and exam (full list below). 


Investors have been using data for as long as they have been investing, but the concept of big data in the hands of the more sophisticated allocator is now becoming much more commonplace and, in many cases, it is a data scientist who is doing the analytics using machine learning tools across numerous types of data sets,” said Joseph Simonian, Senior Investment Strategist at Acadian Asset Management LLC and Co-editor of the Journal of Financial Data Science.“ The analyst must have the knowledge, vocabulary, and courage to challenge these findings systematically in order for these types of investment opportunities to become part of a cogent investment process. The launch of the FDP Institute and the FDP designation is both timely and appropriate.”


Those interested in pursuing the FDP designation can visit for more information and to obtain the prerequisite and the FDP exam requirements. The FDP Institute has selected an international list of prerequisite content providers and will continue to broaden this list to enable more choices for candidates. The FDP exam for 2019 will be available this November for those who successfully complete the prerequisite program.


More information about the FDP Institute and the FDP designation can be found here. Please email with any questions or for further information about the FDP Institute.


About the FDP Institute

The FDP institute was established to address the growing need in finance for a workforce that has the skills to perform in a digitized world where an increasing number of decisions will be data and analytics driven. The FDP institute offers the only global educational program and designation to bridge the gap between financial professionals and data scientists. The FDP credential offers expertise in data science and its practical applications in finance. The FDP curriculum was designed with the collaboration of academia and industry practitioners and is divided into two segments, the online prerequisite courses, providing foundations of mathematics, statistics and Python programming, and the FDP exam covering big data, data mining, and machine learning applications in finance. 


About the CAIA Association

The CAIA Association is the world leader in alternative investment education, offering the only education program uniquely designed for individuals specializing in institutional-quality alternative investments. The Association is best known for the CAIA Charter, an internationally-recognized credential granted upon successful completion of a rigorous two-level exam series, combined with relevant work experience. Earning the CAIA Charter is the gateway to becoming a Member of the CAIA Association, a global network of more than 10,000 alternative investment professionals located in more than 97 countries. The Association supports 30 global Chapters in financial centers in Europe, Asia-Pacific, and North America, including a Virtual Chapter that brings together Members from far-flung locations around the world. CAIA also offers the Fundamentals of Alternative Investments certificate program (“Fundamentals”), an introductory-level online course, designed to provide a foundation in the core concepts in alternative investing. This program represents a natural extension of CAIA’s mission to provide solutions to specific market needs for alternative investment education.


To learn more about the CAIA Association, contact Deborah McLean (413) 253-7373 or


For more information on the CAIA Charter, please visit


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