Purpose: This chapter presents criticisms of financial inclusion.
Methodology: This chapter uses critical discourse analysis to critique the modern financial inclusion agenda.
Findings: The findings reveal that (i) financial inclusion is an invitation to live by finance and leads to the financialization of poverty; (ii) some of the benefits of financial inclusion disappear after a few years; (iii) financial inclusion ignores how poverty affects financial decision-making; (iv) it promotes digital money which is difficult to understand; (v) financial inclusion promotes the use of transaction accounts; (vi) digital money is difficult to understand; and that (vii) some financial inclusion efforts bear a resemblance to a campaign against having cash-in-hand.
Implication: This study will help policymakers in their assessment of the economic, social, political, and cultural factors that hinder financial inclusion as well as the consequence of financial inclusion for society. For academics, this study will provide a critical perspective to on-going financial inclusion debates in the large positivist literature on financial inclusion.
Originality: Currently, there are no studies that use critical discourse analysis to analyze the broader concept of financial inclusion. This chapter is the first study that uses critical discourse analysis to critique some aspects of the modern financial inclusion agenda.
Ozili, P.K. (2021), "Financial Inclusion: A Strong Critique", Özen, E., Grima, S. and Gonzi, R.D. (Ed.) New Challenges for Future Sustainability and Wellbeing (Emerald Studies in Finance, Insurance, and Risk Management), Emerald Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 1-16. https://doi.org/10.1108/978-1-80043-968-920211002
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