Our goal in promoting digital equity is to reach the point at which all individuals and businesses can participate in and receive the benefits of using digital payments.
The current landscape: Financial inclusion remains a challenge
Our research has shown that during the pandemic, the individuals and small businesses that were able to access and use digital technology and make digital payments have weathered the crisis better than others.
However, significant barriers still prevent some businesses and individuals from receiving the full benefits of simple and secure digital payments.
In evaluating the policies that can contribute to our goal of financial inclusion for all, it’s essential to understand two terms: enablement and ecosystem.
Enablement refers to giving someone the authority or means to do something. It can be knowledge, a new skill, resources, or any combination of these that can lead to equity in opportunity.
Ecosystem refers to the infrastructure, human networks, governance frameworks, and ownership structures that interact in today’s hyperconnected digital world.
Visa’s contribution to the e-Book, Future-Proofing Inclusion: Technology Proposals for CDFIs and MDIs, presented at the fifth annual DC Fintech Week in October 2021 shows that scaling financial products offered by MDIs will help to serve an even greater number of people in underrepresented communities.
Small businesses, particularly the startups that were born of adversity and opportunity during the pandemic, have benefited from digitization. We recommend three steps for policymakers to help them thrive.
Digital identification that is inclusive and equitable for everyone, everywhere is a common good. It benefits people, businesses, governments, and numerous other entities including education and health systems.