We are only in the early stages of a broader revolution that will impact every aspect of the global economy, including commerce and government services. Coming financial technology innovations could improve the quality of life for all people.
Over the past few decades, digital technology has transformed finance. Financial technology (fintech) has enabled more people with fewer resources, in more places around the world, to take advantage of banking, insurance, credit, investment, and other financial services. Marion Laboure and Nicolas Deffrennes argue that these changes are only the tip of the iceberg. A much broader revolution is under way that, if steered correctly, will lead to huge and beneficial social change.
The authors describe the genesis of recent financial innovations and how they have helped consumers in rich and poor countries alike by reducing costs, increasing accessibility, and improving convenience and efficiency. They connect the dots between early innovations in financial services and the wider revolution unfolding today. Changes may disrupt traditional financial services, especially banking, but they may also help us address major social challenges: opening new career paths for millennials, transforming government services, and expanding the gig economy in developed markets. Fintech could lead to economic infrastructure developments in rural areas and could facilitate emerging social security and healthcare systems in developing countries. The authors make this case with a rich combination of economic theory and case studies, including microanalyses of the effects of fintech innovations on individuals, as well as macroeconomic perspectives on fintech’s impact on societies.
While celebrating fintech’s achievements to date, Laboure and Deffrennes also make recommendations for overcoming the obstacles that remain. The stakes—improved quality of life for all people—could not be higher.
Provides a detailed account of the economic and social impacts of financial innovations…We recommend this book to readers…who aspire to comprehend contemporary disruptive innovations in finance and the impact of these innovations on the wider economy.
The authors clearly state the roles and responsibilities of governments—again, particularly in developing countries—to promote democracy, but argue that fintech offers a real possibility for changing the world as we know it. This book broadens the vision of fintech's future and unfurls the democratic potential it might have.
Much is being written about fintech; little about how it may transform our lives. Based on new research, Laboure and Deffrennes explain how fintech will create new possibilities for people in advanced and low-income countries alike.
Laboure and Deffrennes highlight the growing importance of financial inclusion and technology. With a wealth of data and case studies, this book demystifies fintech and explains its role in democratizing finance.
Financial services are to the economy what the nervous system is to the human body. Fintech is profoundly changing our economy and our lives. This important book is necessary reading for anyone who cares about the future of our economy or our society.
A panoramic view of the rapidly changing world of digital finance and money, Democratizing Finance spans a remarkable range of issues with clarity and depth, and provides an excellent primer on the social and economic aspects of rapidly-evolving fintech.
- 288 pages
- 6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches
- Harvard University Press
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