Latest News and Important Ideas

  • Using AI to Make Knowledge Workers More Effective 
  • Digital Banks for the Unbanked and Underserved
  • Applying Artificial Intelligence for Social Good
  • FinTech and Consumer Financial Well-Being in the Information Age 
  • Can AI Nudge Us to Make Better Choices?
Using AI to Make Knowledge Workers More Effective (Harvard Business Review)
AI will change the work of financial counselors in the future in a more complex way than just replacing people with machines. Instead of simply replacing people, artificial intelligence is opening up surprising new pathways for collaboration between knowledge workers and machines. AI can augment the expertise of human collaborators and sometimes help create new specialists.

(The Edge Markets)
Many fintechs claim to promote financial inclusion with no real justification. An ongoing question is whether technology can actually lower the cost structure of banking in order to provide services to segments of the population that are unprofitable now. This article discusses how WeBank, China’s first digital bank opened in 2015, claims to be doing just that.  

(McKinsey Global Institute)
To analyze potential AI applications for social good, McKinsey has compiled a library of about 160 AI social-impact use cases. They range from diagnosing cancer to helping blind people navigate their surroundings, identifying victims of online sexual exploitation, and aiding disaster-relief efforts. The conclusion is that AI is growing in importance to tackle societal issues but data accessibility and shortages of AI talent are constraints.

Accion announced that its seed-stage investment initiative Accion Venture Lab is adding $33M to its initial capital pool. The new fund brings together a group of third-party impact and commercial investors that share Venture Lab's commitment to innovative fintech startups that leverage technology to increase the reach, quality, and affordability of financial services for the underserved at scale.

(Think Forward  Initiative)
With the surge of consumer FinTech can we presume that people are better informed and equipped to make good choices?  Measuring the adoption of new technology is much easier than measuring its economic impact. We know that people of different generations and demographic backgrounds incorporate new technology into their lives at different rates. But we know very little about how this affects actual financial outcomes and well-being. This study attempts to address some of these issues.

(Harvard Business Review)
We all know that guiding people to better financial lives often includes using emotional intelligence and building a relationship in order to change behaviors. Whether or not we care to admit it, people are now building relationships with applications and, like people, technology can elicit both positive and negative behaviors from us. How can we use technology to “nudge” people to make better choices around their finances in the future?

Other Stuff: 
I’ll leave it up to you whether that is good or bad!
Research shows that people can increase their luck by consciously practicing being lucky.