Research Challenge

Promoting best practices in equity research
among the next generation of analysts

The CFA Institute Research Challenge is an annual global competition that provides university students with hands-on mentoring and intensive training in financial analysis. Where else but in our colleges and universities can you find the best and brightest minds of the next generation in the investment profession?

What is the purpose of the Research Challenge?

Students work in teams to research and analyze a publicly traded company — sometimes even meeting face-to-face with company management. Each team writes a research report on their assigned company with a buy, sell, or hold recommendation and may be asked to present and defend their analysis to a panel of industry professionals.

How does it work?

CFA Institute member societies together with local universities assemble university teams of three to five students each. Teams are mentored by industry professionals in writing an equity research report on a publicly traded company. The teams then present their findings to a distinguished panel of experts.

What's involved?

The challenge consists of the following components:

Analysis of a public company

Teams research a publicly traded company. Company management presents to the teams and participates in a question and answer session.

Mentoring by a professional research analyst

Each team works with an investment professional, who mentors the team on research process and reviews and critiques their report.

Writing a research report

Students produce an initiation of coverage report on the chosen company. The report is reviewed and scored by a group of judges.

Presentation of research to a high-profile Panel of Experts

Teams present their research to a panel of experts from top financial institutions. The team with the highest combined report and presentation score is the winner.

Advancement to CFA Institute Research Challenge

The winners of the local competitions will advance to compete against teams within their geographic region, culminating in a global final.

Benefits of participation


Showcase your business school on a global scale; Provide students with practical training and exposure to top industry professionals

Mentors and panelists

Promote best practices in research to the next generation; Give back to the investment profession in a high-impact, time compressed manner.


Gain real industry experience and access to professionals and experts in the investment industry; Opportunity to compete against 5000+ students from 1000+ universities in Asia, Europe, and North America including students from these schools ranked among the Financial Times top MBA programs.


Showcase your society to local and regional universities and students; Provide an opportunity for your members to give back to the industry; Connect with and engage senior professionals.

For further information on CFA Institute Research Challenge click here or write to info@cfasi.it

Past editions