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Systematized literature review on financial inclusion and exclusion in developed countries

Beatriz Fernández-Olit (Department of Business, Universidad Internacional de la Rioja – Campus de Logrono, Logrono, Spain)
José María Martín Martín (Department of Business Area, Faculty of Business and Communication, Universidad Internacional de la Rioja – Campus de Logrono, Logrono, Spain)
Eva Porras González (Department of Fundamentals of Economic Analysis, Faculty of Juridical and Social Sciences, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Vicálvaro, Spain)

International Journal of Bank Marketing

ISSN: 0265-2323

Article publication date: 11 November 2019

Issue publication date: 16 April 2020




The purpose of this paper is to provide a systematic literature review of the research published on financial inclusion (FI) and financial exclusion (FE) in developed countries using key terms and strict inclusion and exclusion criteria.


In total, 52 papers were deemed to be relevant to the analysis. These works were critiqued using a framework that addressed geographical contexts, topics, methodologies and theoretical frameworks.


This review highlights the uneven level of development of the academic debate between North America, the UK and continental Europe, and identifies the different theoretical frameworks that construe the body of literature in each region. In addition, the findings show the scant offer of work on the impact that the digital economy has on FE, as well as the reduced number of studies which have focused on certain vulnerable groups and the access to some financial services.

Social implications

The studies reviewed have not analyzed the specific needs of vulnerable groups while considering the different contexts and pathways to exclusion. The evaluation of solutions and strategies to achieve inclusion is one of the least addressed aspects in the literature.


The paper synthesizes the main contributions of the top literature on the redefinition of FI/FE in developed countries, the role of fringe services and new determinants of exclusion. The proliferation of studies regarding FI in low- and middle-income countries has generated a great amount of meta-analysis and systematized reviews of asymmetric results. However, no systematized literature review on the broad scope of FI/FE in developed countries has been published in the last decade. This work sheds light over poorly analyzed areas of research that refer to notable social problems.



Fernández-Olit, B., Martín Martín, J.M. and Porras González, E. (2020), "Systematized literature review on financial inclusion and exclusion in developed countries", International Journal of Bank Marketing, Vol. 38 No. 3, pp. 600-626.



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Copyright © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited

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