Towards cashless society

The 4th Cashless Society Roundtable took place in Copenhagen, on 7-8 of April 2016. This year the event was hosted by the Department of IT Management at Copenhagen Business School (CBS).

The event participants mainly represented academic researchers in the field of mobile payment services. However, several presentations were given by industry represenatives (e.g. Nets and Danske Bank).

It also needs to be mentioned that the majority of participants were from Scandinavian countries (Denmark, Sweden, Finland). And these countries can illustrate the process how the society becomes cashless.  For this reason, not surprisingly, that the event started with a presentation “Sweden as a Cashless Society” by Niklas Arvidsson (KTH, Indek). This was an overview of Swedish way towards cashless society and analysis of reasons that caused this process. Then Stefan Henningsson (CBS) discussed how banks try to meet new challendes in his pesentation “Open API at Saxo Bank”.

The next section was dedicated to the discussion of legal issues and regulation of mobile payments and financial markets by a Danny Gozman (a researcher from Great Britain). A representative of Danske Bank presented their concerns about forthcoming Payment Service Directive 2 (PSD2) and challenges that it may cause.

A separate session was dedicated to the discussion of Bitcoin and blockchain. Academic researchers from Finland presented their approach to study of Bitcoin. And a master student of CBS presented interesting findings of his research how media in two countries (USA and Sweden) presents Bitcoin and blockchain.

Nets presented their input in the development of MobilePay – the most successful mobile payment service in Denmark.

Some more researchers touched upon mobile payment services in Scandinavia.

  • Jan Markendahl (KTH, ICT) spoke about changes and transformations of previously successful SMS ticketing service in Sweden. Due to different regulatory and market reasons this service has almost disappeared.
  • Håkan Klaes Alm (University of Borås) was speaking about payments used at points of sales and attitudes of users to these services in Sweden.
  • I presented a comparison of competition strategies of NFC-based mobile payment service providers in Sweden and Lithuania.
  • Kalina Staykova (CBS) presented a research framework for analysis of mobile payment platforms using examples of MobilePay (Denmark) and Pingit (GB) services.
  • Finally, Ben Eaton (CBS) spoke about evolution of electronic ID in the Scandinavia.

To sum up, the amount of cash in-use in Scandinavia is decreasing. The most common ways of payments are bank cards and mobile payment solutions. Some merchants refuse to accept cash already today. However, when people are asked what they think about cash they respond that cash must remain available, that cash is a humin right, and that they want to have cash even if they do not use it.

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