FISF has supported the following knowledge activities to promote understanding of critical issues in financial inclusion:
1. Building an Inclusive Financial Sector for Agriculture-dependent Households:
Individuals engaged in agriculture are estimated to constitute more than 25 percent of the financially excluded globally, which makes them a critical segment in achieving the Universal Financial Access objectives.
- A global experts workshop on Financial Inclusion of Agriculture Dependent Households was held at The Hague, Netherlands on June 23rd and 24th, 2015, and a report on the workshop has been published and disseminated.
- A published report on the digitization of agricultural payments in Sub-Saharan Africa to advance financial inclusion among farmers in the region.
2. Digital Inclusion Acceleration:
A note on innovations in electronic payment adoption for small retailers has been published and disseminated. The report identified key obstacles to electronic payment adoption, as well as public and private sector actions to overcome these obstacles to expand financial access. A related report estimated the global market opportunity for expanding electronic payments adoption of small retailers to be USD 19 trillion (the estimated value transacted in cash and checks in the form of retail sales, supplier payments and wage payments). The findings from these reports were presented at several global and regional forums attended by over 500 participants in total.
3. Leveraging Technology for Financial Inclusion:
Digital technologies have already begun to transform how adults around the world save, make payments, transfer money, borrow and manage risk. Activities under this stream that explore the potential of such technology in financial inclusion across various fronts:
- A note (and corresponding blog) explores the potential for smart contracts - programmable contracts that automatically execute when pre-defined conditions are met - in the context of financial inclusion.
- A guidance report on digital savings draws insights from a number of country case studies to identify the characteristics of digital savings products and business models that enhance savings product access. It also highlights important policy issues for fostering digital savings market development. The full report has been published, along with a corresponding blog and public brief.
- A synthesis report on fast payments as a part of a comprehensive toolkit on instant payments, that will guide countries and regions on likely alternatives and models has been published, along with a corresponding blog soliciting public comments. This synthesis report was the culmination of sixteen deep dives and fifteen focus notes.
- A note on the legal, regulatory and oversight implications of innovations in retail payments as well as two more notes as part of a comprehensive toolkit on instant payments, covering topics on modern retail payments infrastructure, interoperability, and digitization of government receipts, are pending publication.
4. Creating an Inclusive Financial Sector for Women:
This knowledge activity examines the issues contributing to the persistent gender gap in financial inclusion.
- A recently published report, State of Women’s Financial Inclusion in Pakistan, provides insights to the low levels of financial inclusion for women in Pakistan, one of the countries where access and ownership is particularly uneven across genders. Key insights from the report were disseminated in an international conference in Pakistan.
- A diagnostic study of trade finance for women entrepreneurs in the East African Community is pending publication.
5. Addressing Consumer Risks in Digital Finance:
This activity aims to better understand the nature of new consumer risks posed by digital finance, to identify learnings and new approaches, and to develop appropriate tools and policy guidance to address and mitigate consumer risks that are deemed high-priority and where there are clear gaps in existing international guidance and knowledge. Outputs so far include:
- A note on suptech that explores 18 suptech solutions for market conduct supervision has been published, along with an accompanying blog.
- A note on consumer risks in fintech has been published with an accompanying blog.
6. FISF Program Implementation Knowledge:
The activity aims to document the insights and learnings from the experience of the country programs under FISF. It involves learning notes, blogs and dissemination events to reflect on the FISF experience and share the findings to inform effective future policymaking beyond the FISF program. Outputs so far include:
- A blog on measuring demand-side financial inclusion data.
- A report and blog on how policymakers can leverage geospatial technology to highlight gaps in financial infrastructure and identify high priority growth areas to boost financial inclusion.
- A technical note and blog on tools for digitizing government payments, leveraging the key learnings from FISF have been published.
- A report on lessons learned from the implementation of National Financial Inclusion Strategies in FISF countries has been published and will be disseminated.
- A report on how national authorities can build a financial education approach has been published and will be disseminated.
- A technical brief on testing of key facts statements has been published, along with templates for key facts statements that can be used by financial sector authorities and policy makers.
- A convening FISF Learning Series, featuring livestream and pre-recorded sessions and insight videos to discuss the learnings gained from FISF implementation experience and launch several new publications. The first two webinars of the FISF Learning Series titled ‘Consumer Risks in Fintech’ and ‘The Next Wave of Suptech Innovation: Suptech Solutions for Prudential and Market Conduct Supervision’ respectively were held in April 2021. The other webinars of the series covered a range of topics leveraging learnings from FISF, including: The Role of Data in Women’s Financial Inclusion; Digitizing Government Payments; Protecting Consumer Data in Open Banking; and Retail Payment System Governance.
Last Updated: Sep 22, 2021