30 Apr 2019
Dr Silvia Masiero gives invited presentation at Microsoft Research India
Dr Silvia Masiero presented her work on the impact of cashless transactions on the Indian informal economy at Microsoft Research India, Technology for Emerging Markets group.
The talk focused on Dr Masiero’s ongoing work on India’s transition to a 'cashless' economy, designed to make transactions traceable and identifiable through digital platforms. The work is coauthored with Soumyo Das, International Institute of Information Technology Bangalore, and explores the impact of the advent of a ‘cashless’ economy on urban street sellers in the city of Bangalore. Drawing on insights from street vendors and digital finance providers, the presentation illustrated the core narrative of increased traceability of transactions through cashless architectures, and problematised it by illustrating issues including informational gaps, suitability of platforms to cash-based ecosystems, and discrepancies with the needs experienced by street vendors on a daily basis. The discussion that followed explored implications for countries with large informal sectors transitioning to cashless economies.