What Happens When We Mix FinTech With Smart City Projects


Recently, regulators in India defined a framework for a FinTech regulatory sandbox designed to test products and services in a live environment, similar to established players (BigTech) and startups in the banking and insurance sectors and capital markets. The new sandbox will operate in a FinTech hub at an Indian smart city in Gandhi Nagar, Gujarat. It is run by the International Financial Services Centres Authority (IFSCA), a statutory body set up by the Indian government this year. 

Innovative ecosystems, such as the above-mentioned smart city hubs, lead to partnerships between local research universities and businesses, giving local talents access to intellectual resources and opportunities to practice their skills on smart city projects. A regulatory sandbox provides an opportunity to test innovative products in a fail-safe environment. This article explores why we should care about smart cities and use financial technologies to create such cities.

Rapid urbanization in developing countries is a concern for governments worldwide. Currently, cities are incapable of bearing the increasing load on resources. Cities collapse when they become unlivable, and the evidence for such failing cities can be seen explicitly. The only way out is to create more and smarter cities that are inclusive and sustainable. Fortunately, some efforts, though mostly feeble, are being made to create such cities across the world.

The number of smart cities worldwide and initiated development projects are growing. Globally, 27 cities have been identified as ‘smart cities’ based on specific parameters by various monitoring and governing organizations. Interestingly, the top 25 cities of the world account for half of the world&rsqu …