The idea that technology will take over the world and take away people’s jobs is not clear yet. I used to describe myself as a technological utopian. Now I think I’m slightly dystopian. I’m careful about how technology is applied because it has an impact on our society. We have to be careful about the language we’re using and very clear about how we describe what we’re doing in social terms — why it’s good for customers or why it’s good for society. Or being open and honest about not yet knowing whether it will have a positive impact.
Q: How will your particular industry (banking) be able to utilize superfluid markets?
We focused on four ideas at Innovation Realized that will allow superfluid markets to evolve:
- 3-D printing
- Blockchain technology
- The IoT
I work for a corporate bank, so 3-D printing has less relevance for us. The other three are very real and very present. At Santander, we’re experimenting with AI to make better decisions to improve customer experience and outcomes.
We’re also using blockchain to make it easier for our corporate customers to create a digital identity and authentication that’s secure and can be shared across a banking value chain. When we can embed sensor technology in small devices at low-cost, we can manage risk better and see where things are on the planet. That has a positive impact both financially and from a risk perspective.
Q: What impact will government regulation have on superfluid markets?
There will certainly be an impact because of things like the Second Payment Services Directive (PSD2). You can choose to stick your head in the sand and hope it passes, or you can choose to embrace it and be part of setting the agenda, that changes how we allow customers to move products and services around the banking industry.
So yes, I see threat from PSD2, but I also see opportunity. Many analysts will see it as a potential disintermediation of the banks themselves, but from a customer perspective it makes you think where your value is and what value you deliver to the customer. I welcome this opportunity.
Generated by EYQ, an EY think tank that explores leading and emerging trends, focusing on “what’s after what’s next?”.