A two-fold career in academia and the banking industry was at the core of achievements that earned the Lebanese economist Salim Chahine the prestigious Kuwait Prize in the field of economics and social sciences. The prize is one of five recently announced by the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences in various fields.
A professor of finance at the American University of Beirut’s Olayan School of Business, Chahine is the founder and a former executive director of AUB-Innovation Park and currently serves as third vice-governor of the Banque du Liban, Lebanon’s central bank.
Chahine started his career as a financial analyst in the pipeline and oil industry in Europe. He later worked as a consultant for prominent European and Arab banks and financial institutions while kicking off a career in academia.
Holding the two portfolios, he helped establish bridges between the academic sector and corporate world.
“Coming from the industry and being in academia at the same time, I could help my students better define their career plans and facilitate their introduction to the job market,” Chahine told Al-Fanar Media.
“It also helped the corporate sector understand what is happening in academia and the way they could handle their recruitment strategies while introducing their businesses to students.”
Announcing the award last month, the Kuwait Foundation noted Chahine’s “outstanding research on topics related to finance and banking, including entrepreneurial finance, venture capital and corporate governance.”
Founding an Innovation Park
After returning to Lebanon 17 years ago, Chahine joined the American University of Beirut as professor of finance and director of the M.B.A. program. He acted as interim dean of the Olayan School of Business for three years, during which he founded the AUB-Innovation Park, also known as I-Park, an achievement that is dear to his heart.