Manager Details

About Scientific Beta

Scientific Beta aims to be the first provider of a smart beta indices platform to help investors understand and invest in advanced beta equity strategies.

Established by EDHEC-Risk Institute, one of the very top academic institutions in the field of fundamental and applied research for the investment industry, Scientific Beta shares the same concern for scientific rigour and veracity, which it applies to all the services that it offers investors and asset managers.

The Scientific Beta offering covers three major services:

• Scientific Beta Indices
Scientific Beta Indices are smart beta indices that aim to be the reference for the investment and analysis of alternative beta strategies. Scientific Beta Indices reflect the state-of-the-art in the construction of different alternative beta strategies and allow for a flexible choice among a wide range of options at each stage of their construction process. This choice enables users of the platform to construct their own benchmark, thus controlling the risks of investing in this new type of beta (Smart Beta 2.0).

Within the framework of Smart Beta 2.0 offerings, Scientific Beta provides access to smart factor indices, which give exposure to risk factors that are well rewarded over the long term while at the same time diversifying away unrewarded specific risks. By combining these smart factor indices, one can design very high performance passive investment solutions.

• Scientific Beta Analytics
Scientific Beta Analytics are detailed analytics and exhaustive information on its smart beta indices to allow investors to evaluate the advanced beta strategies in terms of risk and performance. The analytics capabilities include risk and performance assessments, factor and sector attribution, and relative risk assessment. Scientific Beta Analytics also allow the liquidity, turnover and diversification quality of the indices offered to be analysed. In the same way, analytics provide an evaluation of the probability of out-of-sample outperformance of the various strategies present on the platform.

• Scientific Beta Fully-Customised Benchmarks and Smart Beta Solutions is a service proposed by Scientific Beta, and its partners, in the context of an advisory relationship for the construction and implementation of benchmarks specially designed to meet the specific objectives and constraints of investors and asset managers. This service notably offers the possibility of determining specific combinations of factors, considering optimal combinations of smart beta strategies, defining a stock universe specific to the investor, and taking account of specific risk constraints during the benchmark construction process.

With a concern to provide worldwide client servicing, Scientific Beta is present in Boston, London, Nice, Singapore and Tokyo. As of December 31, 2018, there was USD 43bn in assets replicating Scientific Beta indices. 35% of these assets under replication are ESG-compliant. Scientific Beta has a dedicated team of 52 people who cover not only client support from Nice, Singapore and Boston, but also the development, production and promotion of its index offering. Scientific Beta signed the United Nations-supported Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) on September 27, 2016.

News from IPE

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White Papers / Research from Scientific Beta

  • A More Robust Defensive Offering weblink

    Defensive strategies have been popular for many decades. In addition to providing protection in bear markets, they deliver higher risk-adjusted performance than cap-weighted indices over the long-term.

  • Towards Cost Transparency: Estimating Transaction Costs for Smart Beta Strategies weblink

    One of the topics that is often the subject of animated discussion between passive investment management professionals and investors is the slippage between the performance displayed by smart beta indices and the performance that is obtained from replication.

  • Assessing the Robustness of Smart Beta Strategies weblink

    There has been significant evidence that systematic equity investment strategies (so-called smart beta strategies) outperform cap-weighted benchmarks in the long run. However, it is important to recognise that performance analysis is typically conducted on backtests which apply the smart beta methodology to historical stock returns.

  • The Risks of Deviating from Academically-Validated Factors weblink

    Factor investing has never been as popular as it is today. However, with the propagation of this type of investment approach, the equity space is becoming increasingly saturated with more and more factors that are ever more removed from academically-grounded research.

  • Inconsistent Factor Indices: What are the Risks of Index Changes? weblink

    Frequent changes in index methodology is quite a common occurrence in the smart beta industry. While it often stems from index providers’ desire to innovate, it sometimes creates inconsistencies between different product offerings across time. 

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Analysis from IPE

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Head Office
1 George Street
Séverine Cibelly Tel. +33 493 187 863
Company website:
Parent Company:
EDHEC-Risk Institute
Year Founded:

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What’s new

  • edhec research insights autumn 2018

    EDHEC Research Insights: Autumn 2018

    White papersMon, 19 Nov 2018

    In the latest Scientific Beta special issue of the Research Insights supplement to IPE, we first show that achieving robust exposure to long-term rewarded factors, good diversification of unrewarded risks, and high levels of investability are key requirements for adding value with factor indices. 

  • ipe edhec research insights spring 2018

    IPE/EDHEC Research Insights: Spring 2018

    White papersTue, 15 May 2018

    In this supplement, we document the hidden risks of priced risk factors in the equity space, assess the investability of smart beta equity strategies, review general insights from the literature on return estimation and factor models that are relevant for multi-factor portfolio construction…

  • edhec research insights autumn 2017 thumbnail

    IPE/EDHEC-Risk Institute Research Insights: Autumn 2017

    White papersThu, 2 Nov 2017

    This supplement covers the management of market risk in the design of factor indices, an investable long/short market-neutral multi-factor strategy, a leveraged beta one solution as a possible way to manage the exposure to the market factor, the merits of ‘top-down’ approaches compared to ‘bottom-up’ approaches, and the construction methodology of narrow high factor intensity smart factor indices, along with their performances as stand-alone indices.

  • ipe edhec risk institute research insights aut 2016 screenshot

    IPE/EDHEC-Risk Institute Research Insights: Autumn 2016

    White papersSat, 1 Oct 2016

    In this supplement, we clarify the conceptual underpinnings and the need for diversification in factor investing. We show that it is possible to reconcile environmental and financial objectives using low carbon indices. We analyse the benefits of multi-smart factor indices for emerging markets. On the subject of defensive solutions and indices, we look at the concepts underlying low risk equity strategies, introduce alternative approaches to limiting concentration in minimum and low ...

  • IPE-EDHEC Risk Institute Research Insights Autumn 2015

    IPE/EDHEC-Risk Institute Research Insights: Autumn 2015

    White papersWed, 30 Sep 2015

    We look at ‘quality’ investing and more specifically the role of two separate equity risk factors related to balance sheet characteristics: low investment and high profitability. We examine the nature of the relationship between the quality factor, or factors, and the value factor. We examine the robustness of the first generations of smart beta indices on the basis of live track records. We compare the results of smart factor indices with several stylised examples of concentrated factor ...

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