Canadian Ethics Challenge

2020 CFA Society Toronto Ethics Challenge

The Canadian 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: Transparency and FairnessRegulation and Enforcement and Safeguarding the System. 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 the CFA Institute University Affiliation Program in Toronto participated. CFA Society Toronto and CFA Society Ottawa are the co-hosts for this year's local competition for those Ontario universities or colleges who are eligible to participate.

The Canadian Ethics Challenge is designed to increase students’ awareness of the ethical dilemmas they may face as future investment management professionals. Student teams from finance or economics programs are given an ethics case to study and evaluate. Each team then presents its analysis and recommendations, to a panel of judges, selected by the host CFA Society at the Canadian Ethics Challenge local competition.  Following a question and answer period with each team, the judges then select a winner. Their decision is based on the quality of the team’s understanding of the ethical issues involved, their recommendations, and the quality of their analysis, presentation, and responses to the judges questions.

The winning teams from each Canadian Ethics Challenge local competition advances onto the national Canadian Ethics Challenge administered by CFA Societies Canada.

The Canadian Ethics Challenge can:

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

How It Works

A faculty/administration advisor acts as the link between the local host Societies and the student team. The advisor assembles the team and guides them throughout the process.  We ask that at least one representative attend the Canadian Ethics Challenge local competition kickoff event listed in the competition timeline. 


Preliminary Case Round

For the 2019-2020 season, the local level competition will have a preliminary case round if more than 4 university or college teams register by 4 October 2019. All registered teams will be notified on 7 October 2019 if there will be a preliminary case round or not. If required, the preliminary case will be released to all teams on 30 October 2019.

Student teams will have until 20 November 2019 to create a report highlighting the case's ethical infractions and the team's recommendations. Teams will use the CFA Codes of Ethics & Standards of Professional Conducts as a guiding resource for their analysis. The report content must be 11-point, Arial font, double-spaced, and cannot exceed 5 pages.

A panel of judges will evaluate each teams' report and all of the participating teams will be contacted on 05 December 2019 with the top 4 scoring teams. The top 4 teams will move onto the competition case round.

Competition Case Round

The top 4 teams from the preliminary case round will receive the competition case on 06 January 2020. Teams will have 4 weeks to work on their ethics case analysis and presentation. Their final presentation and executive summary (see official rules for guidelines) is due 03 February 2020.

Teams will present their analysis and recommendations to a judging panel of CFA charterholders at the CFA Society Toronto Ethics Challenge local competition on 06 February 2020. The competition is 100% presentation format; which includes a 10-minute presentation and additional 10-minute question and answer period with the judges.

The winning team of the local level will advance to the Canadian Ethics Challenge national competition held in May 2020.

Register Your Team

A faculty adviser from your university chooses and organizes a team (3-5 members) for the local level. One team per university campus is permitted to compete. Students must attend at least 80% of their classes at the particular campus to represent that campus. Students can have full or part-time status. For the Canadian Ethics Challenge, students must be enrolled when the preliminary case study, if needed, is released.

If you have questions about registering or finding a faculty advisor for your team, please click here.


2019-2020 team registration has closed!

See Competition TimelineSee Information VideoSee Current & Past Winners


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