• Shore Road, Jordanstown Campus

    BT37 0QB Newtownabbey

    United Kingdom

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1994 …2022

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Personal profile


Dr William Smyth is Lecturer in Financial Services at Ulster University. He obtained a degree in Mathematics and PhD in Theoretical Physics from Queen’s University Belfast, and has twenty-five years of experience in further and higher education.

Dr Smyth specialises (teaching and research) in the application of machine learning in finance. His research has been published in a broad range of leading international peer-reviewed journals, to include: Quantitative Finance; International Journal of Theoretical and Applied Finance; Physical Review; Journal of Modern Optics; Optics Communications. His recent research interests extend to sustainable finance. In particular, the role machine learning can play in assessing a firm’s preparedness for long-term value creation in the transition from shareholder (business-as-usual) finance to stakeholder (sustainable) finance. His teaching includes: Financial Mathematics & Statistics;  Financial Modelling; Python for Finance; Financial Machine Learning (Python); Financial Technology and Data Science; Risk Measurement.

Fellow of the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications, and Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, Dr Smyth is expert in the use of active and interactive learning techniques in the learning and teaching of mathematics. He led two national curriculum development projects (active learning (2007) and peer observation (2008)) in the further education sector in Northern Ireland, and collaborated with the National Centre for Excellence in Teaching of Mathematics in England. He provided consultancy to the former Department of Learning from 2004-2009 in all aspects of numeracy education, developing an adult numeracy curriculum based on financial awareness. He occupies the unique position of having consulted, developed and delivered mathematics teaching at all levels of the UK National Curriculum.

From 2009-2016, Dr Smyth led an engineering department in a large further education college in Northern Ireland. In 2014 it became the first engineering department to obtain Centre of Excellence status and the first further education college in the UK to offer Hydrogen Safety Engineering education and training. There he championed the use of project-based learning vis-à-vis the CDIO (Conceive, Design, Implement, Operate) model of engineering education; espousing the development of personal, interpersonal and professional skills alongside the acquisition of subject specific and technical knowledge. With CDIO at the core, Dr Smyth developed an entire engineering apprenticeship curriculum with an associated articulation pathway from RQF level 2 to RQF level 6. Following a general inspection in 2014, the Education and Training Inspectorate (ETI) subsequently recommended his model to the wider FE sector in Northern Ireland as an exemplar model of apprenticeship-based engineering education.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 17 - Partnerships for the Goals

Education/Academic qualification

Bachelor, Mathematics, Queens University, Belfast

PhD, Theoretical Physics, Queens University, Belfast

External positions

Brand Ambassador for The FinTech Corridor

Member of FinTech Northern Ireland Association

Reviewer for The Journal of Finance and Data Science


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