Ireland is getting more serious about Fintech innovation. Announced late last week, the Irish government has partnered with ADAPT Centre for Digital Content Technology, commencing a new research program: Fintech Fusion. The program will be headquartered at Trinity College Dublin and will initially run for four years.
The industry / academic research partnership is designed to encourage development of payment technology, Regtech, Insurtech, Distributed Ledger Technology (blockchain) and more.
“The collaboration between industry and third level institutions in research programmes, such as FinTech Fusion, gives Ireland an early advantage in emerging technologies. Coupled with our open economy and strong background in both technology and financial services, this will add to the opportunities already available for the creation of higher value jobs. The investment in ADAPT, from Science Foundation Ireland, is part of the Irish Government’s wider effort to invest in research, support innovation and build Ireland’s knowledge and skills, creating a global hub for digital content technologies. I look forward to the future innovations coming from the ADAPT Centre as it continues to provide cutting-edge solutions to the problems of our digital age.”
At least initially, the research will focus on three main areas: payments, insurance and regulation.
The government states that distributed ledger technology is providing alternative payment systems that are faster, cheaper, and more transparent and mobile payments systems are providing compelling alternatives to traditional banking.
Innovations such as blockchain-based frameworks may reduce human intervention and fraud while increasing transparency and efficiency, helping to transform the insurance industry.
Regtech can assist in the need for compliance in a data driven Fintech world. State of the art tools for risk management and threat mitigation can aid in the rapidly changing environment of financial services.
Professor John Cotter, Director of FinTech Fusion at the ADAPT Centre, added:
“Fintech is the marriage between finance and technology and offers huge growth opportunities for Ireland both in research reputation and economic impact. This funding allows us to take advantage of these opportunities. In FinTech Fusion we have brought together leading financial and technology researchers with dynamic industry partners to answer valuable research questions. This will create new opportunities for Ireland, our researchers, and our industry partners.”
According to a release by the group, Science Foundation Ireland will provide €2 million of the funding, with the balance coming from research agreements with industry partners bringing the total project in excess of €5 million.
FinTech Fusion’s academic researchers will work with more than a dozen companies including Deutsche Börse, Accenture’s The Dock, Fidelity Investments, Microsoft, Gecko Governance, FINEOS and Zurich, to develop FinTech innovations that will have the potential to impact economies, markets, companies and individuals.
Professor Mark Ferguson, Director General of Science Foundation Ireland and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Government of Ireland, said he was delighted to join in launching the Fintech initiative. Ferguson said that Fintech is transforming how financial services are being delivered and collaboration with industry stakeholders is key to success.
“The SFI Spokes programme is designed to enable such partnerships between research and industry so that we can continue to provide Ireland with cutting-edge technologies as a result of excellent and impactful research. I wish the researchers and industry partners involved in this exciting project the very best of luck.”