Decades of relentless technological innovations and new regulations have altered the finance sector. Financial products and markets have never been more reliant on technology.
In this research seminars series, leading researchers from across the University of Edinburgh and partner research institutions will offer an unvarnished view of the emerging sector at the intersection of finance, technology and policy. They will advance debates on the topical issues in FinTech and its interaction with the society, from technological innovations to regulatory issues.
Wednesday 14 April – Professor Marc Cowling (University of Derby)
Wednesday 28 April – Cesar Benedi-Bozalongo, Zsolt Jaczko, James Hughes (Nationwide Building Society)
Wednesday 26 May – Professor Shannon Vallor (Centre for Technomoral Futures, University of Edinburgh)
Wednesday 20 January – Open Banking for Welfare Benefits, Manuel Peleteiro
Vulnerable consumers may be significantly less able to represent their own interests, they may have different needs, and may be more prone to behavioural biases that negatively impact their decision making. In this event, we will explore how Fintech companies are leveraging on transactional banking data to drive improvements in the treatment of vulnerable consumers so that they can experience outcomes that are as good as those for other consumers. We will also discuss a practical example of a holistic framework to identify, understand, capture and monitor the needs of vulnerable customers.
Manuel is an experienced product owner of data-intensive data processes and products. Manuel is the founder of Inbest, a data analytics platform that helps vulnerable customers to understand, apply and monitor the benefits available to them. At Inbest, he is in charge of business development and leads product implementations and specialised consultancy project on banking transactional data.
Prior to these roles, Manuel was a product owner in Moody’s Analytics, quant consultant at Accenture and investment banking analyst at Caixabank. Manuel has a BSc (Hons) Economics and Finance, MSc Financial Mathematics and is a CFA charterholder.
Wednesday 17 February – Techno-solutionism in the Corona-crisis, Claudia Pagliari
The scale and impact of the coronavirus pandemic has shocked western democracies unused to dealing with major outbreaks. One of the biggest challenges for infection control has been the identification and tracking of cases and their contacts, at a scale which is not easy to achieve with conventional public health approaches. In response to this challenge, a variety of so-called ‘contact tracing’ apps began to emerge in the first quarter of 2020 and have gone through several waves of innovation and adaptation, which continues.
This talk told the story of these apps over the course of the pandemic, analysing the complex co-dependencies between the technologies themselves and their social, health systemic and political contexts. It described how the clash between techno-solutionism and privacy fundamentalism resulted in a compromise that yielded relatively little benefit for public health at great public expense, and paradoxically placed more power in the hands of global technology companies. The inconsistent relationship between the privacy features and uptake of such apps in comparable democratic countries also challenges the fetishisation of data privacy/security, in contrast to other fundamental elements of trustworthy systems, users and institutions.
Disillusionment with these apps as ‘saviour technologies’ has led to their de-prioritisation in the UK’s coronavirus response strategy, however the rise of new viral strains, coupled with the increased availability of testing and vaccination, offer new opportunities to derive value from them, provided these conditions of trust can be satisfied.
Dr Claudia Pagliari
Claudia Pagliari PhD FRCPE is Director of Global eHealth at the University of Edinburgh, a theme leader of the NHS Digital Academy, a World Health Organisation Expert in Digital Health and Chair of Scotland’s National Expert Group in Digital Ethics. Her research focuses on the ethical and responsible use of digital and data innovations in healthcare, as well as wider considerations around e-Government and the digital society. Her paper analysing the ethics and value of contact tracing apps helped to inform the Scottish Government’s decision to procure a privacy respecting platform and she has recently been advising Scottish Government on the ethical governance of the Data Intelligence Network for Scotland. She has recently started a new AHRC project focused on Good Governance and trust in Data Driven Responses to Public Health Emergencies.
Wednesday 3 March – Standing Out and Fitting In: How FinTech Start-ups Gain from Industry Analyst Endorsement, Dr Neil Pollock, Dr Milan Frederik Klus, Dr Carsten Sorensen
It is widely recognised that new digital ventures, because they are an unknown quantity, rely on influential intermediaries to endorse them. However, in some areas like the finance sector, gaining the support of an intermediary can be essential if a venture is to have the resources needed to survive and prosper. It can be challenging for newcomers to gain a foothold in the financial industry and translate their innovative offerings into the well-understood context of traditionally conservative incumbent (banks). Yet it is unclear what actions ventures can take to attract intermediary coverage and, in turn, the influence the intermediary has on their development.
To study this crucial phenomenon, the speakers carried out qualitative research on the pitches FinTechs make to industry analysts. They developed a process model of intermediary evaluation that shows how FinTechs move from being an unknown quantity to engaging industry analysts to being endorsed by them. Their central finding is that industry analyst coverage is essential to FinTech development because they help them stand out and fit in. The speakers offer contributions to scholarship on FinTech development, intermediaries and digital entrepreneurship.
Milan Frederik Klus, Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Bremen
Neil Pollock, Professor of Innovation and Social Informatics, University of Edinburgh
Carsten Sørensen, Associate Professor (Reader) of Information Systems and Innovation, London School of Economics and Political Science.
Upcoming Fintech, Value and Society Events