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Module ASB-4008:
Financial Technology

Module Facts

Run by Bangor Business School

15 Credits or 7.5 ECTS Credits

Semester 2

Organiser: Prof Bernardo Batiz-Lazo

Overall aims and purpose

The term financial innovation (FinTech) has been coined to bring together a loose and broad number of innovations and technological start up companies which aim to redefine retail finance.

This module aims to provide firm conceptual and empirical foundations for participants. This by going the hype and common misconceptions (such as the importance of first movers, "presentism" or "disruptive" technologies) to provide participants with firm conceptual underpinnings from which to consider financial innovation in a long-term perspective. The module also aims to provide a broad overview of current developments and issues around financial technology in wholesale and retail finance. This module thus covers a broad range of topics around the drivers of innovation, financial technology and start ups in banking (with an emphasis on retail banking). Topics will include the people and institutions which create and disseminate this knowledge.

The module will be quite demanding in terms of weekly reading as preparation for lectures, teaching case studies, course work and exam.

Course content

This module will look at the long-term perspective to the technological change in retail banking. It will start by introducing alternative theories to innovation (e.g. Schumpeter, Diffusion of Innovation, Disruptive Innovation) and their critique. This will be followed by a discussion on the economics of technological innovation (e.g. industrial networks, path dependence, two sided markets) and alternative approaches (e.g. ethnographic and sociological approaches to financial innovation; Critical studies and the labour problem). The module will also look at current trends in financial technologies such as financialization, Cashless Society, Mobile Payments, Blockchain & ledger technology, Computer trading, Omnichanel, Crowdsourcing.

Assessment Criteria

C- to C+

Satisfactory standard (C- to C+): No major omissions or inaccuracies in the deployment of information/skills. Some grasp of theoretical/conceptual/practical elements. Integration of theory/practice/information present intermittently in pursuit of the assessed work's objectives.


Average Standard (B- to B): Much of the relevant information and skills mostly accurately deployed. Adequate grasp of theoretical/conceptual/practical elements. Fair integration of theory/practice/information in the pursuit of the assessed work's objectives. Some evidence of the use of creative and reflective skills.

High Standard: (B to B+) Very good performance Most of the relevant information accurately deployed. Good grasp of theoretical/conceptual/practical elements. Good integration of theory/practice/information in pursuit of the assessed work's objectives. Evidence of the use of creative and reflective skills.


D- to D+; No major omissions or inaccuracies in the deployment of information/skills; Some grasp of theoretical/conceptual/practical elements; Integration of theory/practice/information present intermittently in pursuit of the assessed work's objectives.


Excellent standard (A- to A*): An outstanding performance, exceptionally able. The relevant information accurately deployed. Excellent grasp of theoretical/conceptual/practice elements. Good integration of theory/practice/information in pursuit of the assessed work's objectives. Strong evidence of the use of creative and reflective skills.

Learning outcomes

  1. Critically assess the main elements and features of alternative conceptual elements to understand innovation in banking;

  2. Provide solutions to challenges in management of technological change.

  3. Demonstrate an in depth knowledge of the contexts which have given rise to different views on managing technological change in financial services;

  4. Recognise, evaluate and assess the large number of cultural, political, economic and environmental factors that gave rise to different forms and practices across countries and cultures;

  5. Identify, enumerate and discuss the various dimensions of technical change and automation;

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
Assignment 50
Exam S2 2hrs 50

Teaching and Learning Strategy


Identify challenges and potential solutions to current issues in the management of technological change in banking through the discussion of teaching case studies and other media.


Offer a combination of traditional lectures and multi media resource.

Private study

Prepare for lectures from a list of readings of contemporary issues and journal articles.


Transferable skills

  • Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
  • Numeracy - Proficiency in using numbers at appropriate levels of accuracy
  • Computer Literacy - Proficiency in using a varied range of computer software
  • Self-Management - Able to work unsupervised in an efficient, punctual and structured manner. To examine the outcomes of tasks and events, and judge levels of quality and importance
  • Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
  • Information retrieval - Able to access different and multiple sources of information
  • Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
  • Critical analysis & Problem Solving - Able to deconstruct and analyse problems or complex situations. To find solutions to problems through analyses and exploration of all possibilities using appropriate methods, rescources and creativity.
  • Teamwork - Able to constructively cooperate with others on a common task, and/or be part of a day-to-day working team
  • Management - Able to utilise, coordinate and control resources (human, physical and/or financial)
  • Argument - Able to put forward, debate and justify an opinion or a course of action, with an individual or in a wider group setting
  • Self-awareness & Reflectivity - Having an awareness of your own strengths, weaknesses, aims and objectives. Able to regularly review, evaluate and reflect upon the performance of yourself and others
  • Leadership - Able to lead and manage, develop action plans and objectives, offer guidance and direction to others, and cope with the related pressures such authority can result in

Subject specific skills

  • People management: to include communications, team building, leadership and motivating others.
  • Problem solving and critical analysis: analysing facts and circumstances to determine the cause of a problem and identifying and selecting appropriate solutions.
  • Research: the ability to analyse and evaluate a range of business data, sources of information and appropriate methodologies, which includes the need for strong digital literacy, and to use that research for evidence-based decision-making.
  • Commercial acumen: based on an awareness of the key drivers for business success, causes of failure and the importance of providing customer satisfaction and building customer loyalty.
  • Networking: an awareness of the interpersonal skills of effective listening, negotiating, persuasion and presentation and their use in generating business contacts.
  • Ability to work collaboratively both internally and with external customers and an awareness of mutual interdependence.
  • Ability to work with people from a range of cultures.
  • Articulating and effectively explaining information.
  • Communication and listening including the ability to produce clear, structured business communications in a variety of media.
  • Conceptual and critical thinking, analysis, synthesis and evaluation.
  • Self-management: a readiness to accept responsibility and flexibility, to be resilient, self-starting and appropriately assertive, to plan, organise and manage time.
  • Self reflection: self-analysis and an awareness/sensitivity to diversity in terms of people and cultures. This includes a continuing appetite for development.


Resource implications for students

Readings will be made available through Talis. No resource implication for students.

Talis Reading list

Reading list

(There is Talis reading list. The titles below are just examples)

Bátiz-Lazo, Bernardo, Joan Carles Maixé-Altés, and Paul Thomes. Technological Innovation in Retail Finance: International Historical Perspectives. Routledge International Studies in Business History. Edited by Matthias Kipping and Ray Stokes London and New York: Routledge, 2011.

Bátiz-Lazo, Bernardo, and Peter Wardley. "Banking on Change: Information Systems and Technologies in Uk High Street Banking, 1919-1969." Financial History Review 14, no. 2 (2007): 177-205.

Bell, Stephanie. "The Role of the State in the Hierarchy of Money." Cambridge Journal of Economics 25, no. 149-163 (2001).

Evans, David S., and Richard Schmalensee. "Markets with Two-Sided Platforms." Issues Competition and Law Policy (2008): 667-93.

Hannan, T. , and M. McDowell. "Rival Precedence and the Dynamics of Technology Adoption: An Empirical Analysis." Economica 54, no. 214 (1987): 151-71.

Liebowitz, Stan J., and Stephen E. Margolis. "The Fable of the Keys." Journal of Law and Economics 33, no. 1 (1990): 1-25.

Maurer, Bill. "The Anthropology of Money ". Annual Review of Anthropology 35 (2006): 15-36.

Maurer, Bill, Taylor C. Nelms, and Stephen C. Rea. "‘Bridges to Cash’: Channelling Agency in Mobile Money." Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute 19, no. 1 (2013): 52–74.

McAndrews, James, and Zhu Wang. "The Economics of Two-Sided Payment Card Markets: Pricing, Adoption and Usage." In Economics Research Department WP -8-12, edited by Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City. Kansas City MO, 2008.

Verdier, Marianne. "Retail Payment Systems: What Can We Learn from Two-Sided Markets?". Communications & Strategies 61, no. 1 (2006): 37-59.

Wray, L. Randall. Credit and State Theories of Money: The Contributions of A. Mitchell Innes. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, 2004.

Courses including this module

Compulsory in courses:

Optional in courses: