The Digital Revolution in Financial Inclusion: International Development in the Fintech Era

  • Citation: Gabor, Daniela, and Sally Brooks. “The Digital Revolution in Financial Inclusion: International Development in the Fintech Era.” New Political Economy 22, no. 4 (2016): 423–36.
    • Topics:
    • Business and Trade
    • Keywords:
    • international development
    • financial inclusion
    • fintech
    • digital technologies
    • financialization
    • behavioral economics

This paper examines the growing importance of digital-based financial inclusion as a form of organising development interventions through networks of state institutions, international development organisations, philanthropic investment and fintech companies. The fintech–philanthropy–development complex generates digital ecosystems that map, expand and monetise digital footprints. Its ‘know thy (irrational) customer’ vision combines behavioural economics with predictive algorithms to accelerate access to, and monitor engagement with, finance. The digital revolution adds new layers to the material cultures of financial(ised) inclusion, offering the state new ways of expanding the inclusion of the ‘legible’, and global finance new forms of ‘profiling’ poor households into generators of financial assets.

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