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28 January 2020 - The Idea of Money in the 4th Industrial Revolution and the Perception of Value by Prof Emilios Avgouleas

Decades of relentless technological innovations and new regulations have altered the finance sector. Financial products and markets have never been more reliant on technology.

In this research seminars series, leading researchers from across the University of Edinburgh and partner research institutions will offer an unvarnished view of the emerging sector at the intersection of finance, technology and policy. They will advance debates on the topical issues in FinTech and its interaction with the society, from technological innovations to regulatory issues.

Speaker: Prof Emilios Avgouleas, Chair of International Banking Law and Finance

Title: The Idea of Money in the 4th Industrial Revolution and the Perception of Value

From economics, to Law, to sociology money remains an elusive concept. The technological revolution has altered the way money and payments are delivered and has given rise to new means of payment whether they are defined as cryptocurrencies or partly or fully backed stable-coins like the planned Facebook Libra. This seminar by Emilios Avgouleas will explain that beyond the classic economic approaches, money is also a means of political and social organisation and in a decentralised world the notion that money is merely provided by the state no longer holds true. But for the new means of payment to qualify as money within and outside the law their most durable characteristic has to be retention of their utility as a measure of value (I.e, the use of money as memory). Unless the new means of payment fulfil this function that goes beyond liquidity, payment/extinction of debt obligations, and amelioration of transaction costs, they cannot be called money. This new approach allows for expansion of the idea of money beyond metal or fiat but it excludes most high volatility cryptocurrencies.

For more information on Prof Avgouleas please see his website.

The evening will conclude with a drinks reception.