To read this content please select one of the options below:

Financial technology to address the liability of poorness? A typology of FinTech organisations

Nadeera Ranabahu (University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand)

European Journal of Innovation Management

ISSN: 1460-1060

Article publication date: 5 December 2022




This paper explores how financial technology (FinTech) organisations address poverty-related challenges when providing digital financial services. Employing the conceptual foundation of the liability of poorness (i.e. literacy gaps, a scarcity mindset, intense non-business pressures and a lack of financial slack), this paper explores the innovative strategies that FinTechs use to address these liabilities and promote entrepreneurship.


The paper uses detailed case data collected from three FinTech organisations operating in one South Asian country.


FinTech organisations' innovative strategies reflect a combination of “high touch” (human) vs “low touch” (digital) solutions. All the organisations simplified internal systems or procedures to accommodate customers. The degree to which the three organisations adopted each of the identified strategies shows an emerging typology of FinTechs; that is, innovators with high digital interactions, a mix of digital-human interactions and high human interactions.

Research limitations/implications

The paper develops a typology which categorises FinTech innovative strategies. The typology highlights strategies pro-poor FinTechs use and explains the types of entrepreneurial support innovative organisations provide for their customers. Both the typology and the innovative strategies contribute to enhanced financial inclusion and entrepreneurial promotion amongst the poor.


The originality of the paper comes from its focus on FinTechs' innovative pro-poor strategies. Existing studies typically address the technology-side of innovations. In contrast, this paper combines innovative strategies with the liability of poorness to identify issues associated with financial inclusion.



The author acknowledges the comments received by the reviewers of this paper.


Ranabahu, N. (2022), "Financial technology to address the liability of poorness? A typology of FinTech organisations", European Journal of Innovation Management, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles