Financial Inclusion

Daily Review: Humanitarian Assistance Will Emerge as the Most Significant Area of Innovation

MEDICIGlobal Head of Content

“Cash transfer programming (CTP) is widely recognized as one of the most significant areas of innovation in humanitarian assistance, with rapid recent growth and huge potential to meet more needs, better.” – The State of the World’s Cash 2018, Cash Learning Partnership (CaLP)

The number of refugees, asylum-seekers and internally displaced people around the world has topped 65 million. Escalating humanitarian crises, rapidly changing political environments has created a class of people in a severe need for a new approach to inclusion. Cash Learning Partnership (CaLP) advocates that direct cash assistance has shown promise in alleviating hardships of various nature for individuals and families in need of humanitarian assistance.

With the ever-growing number of people forcibly displaced from their home countries due to various factors, the technology sector will soon find an answer in form of a new niche, targeting solutions for people that do not fit into any national formal financial system.

Pick #1. The State of the World’s Cash 2018

The benefits of cash-based assistance have been shown to cut across multiple sectors. And many opportunities have been identified to align cash transfer programming (CTP) [direct distribution of money to people in need] with major reforms at every level, from achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, to strengthening social protection systems and realizing the UN’s New Way of Working. CTP has been actively linked to a host of other reforms such as: financial inclusion, the digital revolution, evolving coordination mechanisms, strengthening local leadership, enhancing dignity and accountability to affected populations, and improving monitoring and reporting of results.

At the same time, CTP is not a silver bullet capable of solving all the problems associated with aid. Rather it is one factor, among many, driving a wider set of reforms across the sector. However, the increasing scale of CTP is driving disruptive innovation by raising strategic questions for organizations about their role and function, and how different humanitarian stakeholders best work together. Answering these questions cuts across established ways of working and interests.

Different actors have overlapping goals and ambitions for CTP. Whether CTP is seen as a tool to realize wider reforms, an integral component of a related set of reforms or a straightforward good in its own terms, it is clear that the increasing scale of CTP is inextricably linked to the future of the humanitarian aid sector. The case for CTP has been made. It now remains to ensure the hard work is continued across humanitarian actors to realize the benefits and opportunities it offers.

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Pick #2. Signing Pledge to Fight Cyberattacks, 34 Leading Companies Promise Equal Protection for Customers Worldwide

The victims of cyberattacks are businesses and organizations of all sizes, with economic losses expected to reach $8 trillion by 2022. 34 global technology and security companies signed a Cybersecurity Tech Accord, an agreement among the largest-ever group of companies agreeing to defend all customers everywhere from malicious attacks by cybercriminal enterprises and nation-states. The 34 companies include ABB, Arm, Cisco, Facebook, HP, HPE, Microsoft, Nokia, Oracle, and Trend Micro, and together represent operators of technologies that power the world’s internet communication and information infrastructure.

The companies made commitments in four areas: Stronger defense, No offense, Capacity building, and Collective action.

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Pick #3. Goldman May Acquire Its Way to a Bigger Consumer Bank

During a conference call to discuss quarterly results, Wells Fargo analyst Mike Mayo listed the ways Goldman is trying to generate $5 billion more in annual revenue and asked Chief Financial Officer R. Martin Chavez whether it would simply buy a brick-and-mortar bank.

“We are evaluating all these acquisitions, including things that you describe,” he said. “We are open-minded and it’s all part of the consideration.”

Since launching its digital consumer bank Marcus in 2016, Goldman has been growing the business by paying up for deposits, offering new products like home improvement loans and recently acquiring Clarity Money, a personal finance smartphone app. Marcus is now lending out $3 billion of its more than $20 billion in deposits, making it a much smaller bank with a much lower loan-to-deposit ratio than lenders like JPMorgan Chase & Co, Bank of America Corp, or even Morgan Stanley.

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Elena Mesropyan

MEDICIGlobal Head of Content

Global Head of Content, MEDICI

Elena is a research professional with a background in social sciences and extensive experience in consumer behavior studies and marketing analytics. She is passionate about technologies enabling financial inclusion for underprivileged and vulnerable groups of the population around the world.