Since the financial downturn the world has seen a rush of activity outside of the traditional banking system in a process which can be called ‘digital unbanking’. The adoption of ‘peer-to-peer’ systems allows people to interact economically with each other directly. The revolution has been made possible by the dematerialization of money and by new software platforms.
While it is technology that has created the new opportunities, the technologies by themselves are unlikely to lead to a high degree of transformation. Learning about the role and implementation of these technologies in the wild is necessary in order to understand the motivations and social norms of the people involved, and to build upon them.
Recent research by HCDI colleague Mark Perry has evaluated the role of ‘peer-to-peer’ designs and the effects on the patterns of use of financial services. The culmination of the research takes the form of a succinct and well referenced “toolkit” which can be downloaded by anyone who has an interest in joining the revolution.