Nov 11 2014

A Road Map for Worldwide Financial Services Innovation

Is it possible for innovation in the financial services sector to create positive results for the "little guy?" Or is financial services innovation, by its very nature, just about creating profits? Cooperative financial institutions are mandated to put people before profits, so they must apply the filter of increased member benefit to every innovation they consider. This adds a layer of time and complexity to every decision cooperatives make, but there are opportunities to innovate and benefit members at the same time. 

Good examples include:

  • Mobile banking —This has been especially critical in developing countries that lack the infrastructure to support traditional banking service channels.
  • Microfinancing —Examples abound of how microfinancing has helped low-income people around the world improve their quality of life.
  • Prize-linked savings campaigns —These have a proven track record of increasing savings levels around the world, especially among low-income, financially vulnerable nonsavers.

Not only does this report provide a historical snap shot of innovations specifically linked to financial services, but it outlines how the six-step Filene Method can help innovators move from insights to results in the financial services sector. 

Filene thanks Desjardins for its generous support and curiosity in bringing the innovation topic to a larger audience.

We also wish to thank PSCU for their ongoing support, especially around the innovation topic.

Report Number 337