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Insurtech, Proptech & Fintech Environment: Sustainability, Global Trends and Opportunities

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 September 2021) | Viewed by 86772

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Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Economics and Business, Universidad de Almería, La Cañada de San Urbano, s/n, 04120 Almería, Spain
Interests: investment; financial analysis; portfolio; financial economics; capital markets
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Guest Editor
Departamento de Economía de la Empresa, Facultad de Ciencias Jurídicas y Sociales, Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Madrid, Spain
Interests: banking; microfinance; fintech; neuroeconomics
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This Special Issue focuses on the InsurTech, PropTech, and FinTech environments. It is well known that “FinTech” comes from the union of two words, “Finance” and “Technology”, “InsurTech” is the union of the words “Insurance” and “Technology”, and PropTech it is a use of technology in the real estate industry to make transactions more efficient. This sector is probably one of the most relevant new markets in recent years, with a great potential to generate collaborations with financial institutions, the insurance world, and jointly grow towards a more innovative business model.

This sector features investors who seek to detect the best investment opportunities without intermediaries and with all those companies that want collaborate with different products and services technological, legal, marketing, and HR, among others.

It implies an advanced business model that adopts emerging technology and pays special attention to the digital transformation of the financial industry and its effect on sustainability. The analysis of and research on the opportunities, challenges, and global trends of this sector may contribute directly and indirectly to the achievement of a sustainable development industry. Therefore, we consider that there is great potential to make further contributions on this topic.

Thus, papers submitted to this Special Issue should cover some of those topics from a wide range of views and fields such as financial, technological, digital, management, international business, and quantitative analysis, including sustainable business. Those contributions are not limited to academics, but also practitioners are very welcome.

This Special Issue seeks original contributions demonstrating the significant advancements, innovations, relevance, and potential growth of this sector in the forthcoming years.

Dr. Salvador Cruz Rambaud
Dr. Joaquín López Pascual
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • banks
  • finance
  • digital transformation
  • FinTech
  • sustainability
  • InsurTech
  • PropTech
  • product innovation
  • customer satisfaction
  • good practices

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Editorial

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3 pages, 192 KiB  
Editorial
Insurtech, Proptech, and Fintech Environment: Sustainability, Global Trends and Opportunities
by Salvador Cruz Rambaud and Joaquín López Pascual
Sustainability 2023, 15(12), 9574; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15129574 - 14 Jun 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1213
Abstract
The Special Issue “Insurtech, Proptech, and Fintech Environment: Sustainability, Global Trends and Opportunities” is focused on the InsurTech, PropTech, and FinTech environments [...] Full article

Research

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21 pages, 3643 KiB  
Article
Business Models and Sustainability Plans in the FinTech, InsurTech, and PropTech Industry: Evidence from Spain
by Javier Sada Bittini, Salvador Cruz Rambaud, Joaquín López Pascual and Roberto Moro-Visconti
Sustainability 2022, 14(19), 12088; https://doi.org/10.3390/su141912088 - 24 Sep 2022
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 3661
Abstract
After describing the main features of the Spanish companies belonging to the FinTech, InsurTech, and PropTech sectors, the main objective of this study is to analyze whether their B2B/B2C business models are related to the existence of sustainability plans. Specifically, this paper analyzes [...] Read more.
After describing the main features of the Spanish companies belonging to the FinTech, InsurTech, and PropTech sectors, the main objective of this study is to analyze whether their B2B/B2C business models are related to the existence of sustainability plans. Specifically, this paper analyzes whether the existence of a sustainability department is a determining factor for the business model adopted by the Spanish FinTechs, InsurTechs, and PropTechs. By using the multinomial logit regression, other factors such as the current closeness of companies to the sustainable development goals (SDGs), the sensitivity to domestic and European FinTech/InsurTech regulations, and the perception of FinTechs about such European regulations are debated before conclusions are drawn for a future research agenda. Full article
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15 pages, 539 KiB  
Article
Impacts of Digital Technostress and Digital Technology Self-Efficacy on Fintech Usage Intention of Chinese Gen Z Consumers
by You-Kyung Lee
Sustainability 2021, 13(9), 5077; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13095077 - 30 Apr 2021
Cited by 36 | Viewed by 8437
Abstract
The role of digital technostress and self-efficacy in digital marketing research is seldom discussed and even more rarely examined among Gen Z consumers. This study investigates the relationships between four sub-dimensions of technostress (complexity, overload, invasion, and uncertainty), digital technology self-efficacy, and fintech [...] Read more.
The role of digital technostress and self-efficacy in digital marketing research is seldom discussed and even more rarely examined among Gen Z consumers. This study investigates the relationships between four sub-dimensions of technostress (complexity, overload, invasion, and uncertainty), digital technology self-efficacy, and fintech usage intention. Data from a total of 266 Chinese Gen Z consumers were used in multiple regression analysis. The results of the study generally support that all sub-dimensions of technostress were negatively related to fintech usage intention. Related to the moderating effects of digital technology self-efficacy on the relationship between the four sub-dimensions of technostress and fintech usage intention, significant interaction effects with complexity and overload were found. Finally, the study discusses the theoretical and managerial implications of the research findings. Full article
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18 pages, 625 KiB  
Article
Toward a Chatbot for Financial Sustainability
by Sewoong Hwang and Jonghyuk Kim
Sustainability 2021, 13(6), 3173; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13063173 - 13 Mar 2021
Cited by 29 | Viewed by 8199
Abstract
This study examines technology effectiveness for industry demand in which artificial intelligence (AI) is applied in the financial sector. It summarizes prior studies on chatbot and customer service and investigates theories on acceptance attitudes for innovative technologies. By setting variables, the study examines [...] Read more.
This study examines technology effectiveness for industry demand in which artificial intelligence (AI) is applied in the financial sector. It summarizes prior studies on chatbot and customer service and investigates theories on acceptance attitudes for innovative technologies. By setting variables, the study examines bank revenue methodologically and assesses the impact of customer service and chatbot on bank revenues through customer age classification. The results indicate that new product-oriented funds or housing subscription savings are more suitable for purchase through customer service than through chatbot. However, services for existing products through chatbot positively affect banks’ net income. When classified by age, purchases by the majority age group in the channel positively affect bank profits. Finally, there is a tendency to process small banking transactions through the chatbot system, which saves transaction and management costs, positively affecting profits. Through empirical analysis, we first examine the effect of an AI-based chatbot system implemented to strengthen financial soundness and suggest policy alternatives. Second, we use banking data to increase the study’s real-life applicability and prove that problems in customer service can be solved through a chatbot system. Finally, we investigate how resistance to technology can be reduced and efficiently accommodated. Full article
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15 pages, 695 KiB  
Article
An Acceptance Approach for Novel Technologies in Car Insurance
by Nemanja Milanović, Miloš Milosavljević, Slađana Benković, Dušan Starčević and Željko Spasenić
Sustainability 2020, 12(24), 10331; https://doi.org/10.3390/su122410331 - 10 Dec 2020
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 4151
Abstract
Background: Unlike other financial services, technology-driven changes in the insurance industry have not been a vastly explored topic in scholarly literature. Incumbent insurance companies have hitherto been holding their positions using the complexity of the product, heavy regulation, and gigantic balance sheets as [...] Read more.
Background: Unlike other financial services, technology-driven changes in the insurance industry have not been a vastly explored topic in scholarly literature. Incumbent insurance companies have hitherto been holding their positions using the complexity of the product, heavy regulation, and gigantic balance sheets as paramount factors for a relatively slow digitalization and technological transformation. However, new technologies such as car telematic devices have been creating a new insurance ecosystem. The aim of this study is to assess the telematics technology acceptance for insurance purposes. Methods: The study is based on the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT). By interviewing 502 new car buyers, we tested the factors that affect the potential usage of telematic devices for insurance purposes. Results: The results indicate that facilitating conditions are the main predictor of telematics use. Moreover, privacy concerns related to the potential abuse of driving behavior data play an important role in technology acceptance. Conclusions: Although novel insurance technologies are mainly presented as user-driven, users (drivers and insurance buyers) are often neglected as an active party in the development of such technologies. Full article
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24 pages, 1696 KiB  
Article
Sustainability in FinTechs: An Explanation through Business Model Scalability and Market Valuation
by Roberto Moro-Visconti, Salvador Cruz Rambaud and Joaquín López Pascual
Sustainability 2020, 12(24), 10316; https://doi.org/10.3390/su122410316 - 10 Dec 2020
Cited by 67 | Viewed by 15186
Abstract
Framework: Financial Technology (FinTech) is an industry composed of diversified firms that combine financial services with innovative technologies. The research question and main goal are attempting to answer whether they are more similar to traditional banks or trendy technological firms deploying their [...] Read more.
Framework: Financial Technology (FinTech) is an industry composed of diversified firms that combine financial services with innovative technologies. The research question and main goal are attempting to answer whether they are more similar to traditional banks or trendy technological firms deploying their innovativeness to favor financial inclusion and sustainability. Justification: Evaluators may wonder if FinTechs follow the typical evaluation patterns of bank/financial intermediaries or those of technological firms. Preliminary empirical evidence shows that the latter interpretation is the one consistent with the stock-market mood. Objective: This study goes beyond the extant literature, analyzing the differences between FinTechs and traditional banks in market valuation, and showing the potential for digital interaction and cross-pollination of complementary business models. Methodology: The differences will be empirically analyzed with the stock market valuation and the multipliers associated with these firms. Results: The main contribution of this paper is that the appraisal approaches of FinTechs follow those of technological startups, having a revenue model much more scalable than that of a typical bank. FinTechs may so provide a solution for sustainable finance with microfinance and crowdfunding among others. FinTechs and traditional banks may eventually converge towards a common market exploiting co-opetition strategies. Full article
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25 pages, 658 KiB  
Article
An Eco-Systematic View of Cross-Sector Fintech: The Case of Alibaba and Tencent
by Yingying Zhang-Zhang, Sylvia Rohlfer and Jay Rajasekera
Sustainability 2020, 12(21), 8907; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12218907 - 27 Oct 2020
Cited by 38 | Viewed by 10159
Abstract
This paper explores the most recent Fintech (financial technology) phenomenon from an ecosystem perspective. Differentiated from the earlier Fintech evolution led by traditional financial institutions, “cross-sector” Fintech that operates at the intersection of financial services and information technology disrupts existing business models of [...] Read more.
This paper explores the most recent Fintech (financial technology) phenomenon from an ecosystem perspective. Differentiated from the earlier Fintech evolution led by traditional financial institutions, “cross-sector” Fintech that operates at the intersection of financial services and information technology disrupts existing business models of banks while creating novel ecosystem dynamics. This study explores the Fintech ecosystem composition to understand better business model innovation based on underlying ecosystem dynamics while focusing on the specific role of cross-sector actors. These actors have escaped scrutiny despite being mature and experienced and having strong resource bases. Adopting a comparative case study method by considering the China-based Alibaba Group and Tencent, the study’s findings indicate that novel business model developments based on strong technological expertise and scale-based resources by cross-sector Fintech render a functional perspective on fast-developing Fintech industry less practical. Apart from cross-sector Fintech, investors constitute a new dimension in the conceptualization of the Fintech ecosystem. Overall, the interconnectedness of the cross-sector Fintech beyond the Fintech sectors drives the fuzzy boundaries between ecosystems, established business models, terminology definitions, ecosystem actors’ roles and relationships, which appear to become more heterogeneous and changeable over time. The study contributes to the scant literature on Fintech ecosystems and their sustainable development. Full article
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18 pages, 1150 KiB  
Article
Digital Entrepreneurship in Finance: Fintechs and Funding Decision Criteria
by Kristin Hommel and Peter M. Bican
Sustainability 2020, 12(19), 8035; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12198035 - 29 Sep 2020
Cited by 42 | Viewed by 6418
Abstract
After the 2007–08 global financial crisis, research flourished on entrepreneurship through digital innovation in the financial market as well as on investors’ influence on digital technology-based entrepreneurs’ funding decisions. This study combines these two research streams to analyze the decision-making criteria for funding [...] Read more.
After the 2007–08 global financial crisis, research flourished on entrepreneurship through digital innovation in the financial market as well as on investors’ influence on digital technology-based entrepreneurs’ funding decisions. This study combines these two research streams to analyze the decision-making criteria for funding financial technology companies (fintechs), hybrid companies that combine digital entrepreneurship, technology, and banking. The study first uses prior literature to derive important characteristics to define fintechs and then uses 12 expert interviews to elaborate on decision-making criteria in funding. Except for smaller peculiarities, fintech funding does not appear to differ from that of other digital entrepreneurship in different markets, and—as with most digital business models—scalability was identified as a key criterion. Additionally, by serving as a major provider of money for young companies, banks have changed their role and positioning in funding new financial technology entrepreneurs. Through developments in digital technology, banks have shifted from traditional money-lending activities (i.e., debt-financing) to becoming stakeholders in fintechs and, hence, equity investors. We also describe how these formerly distinct fields have converged due to regulatory requirements, digital newcomers, and a need for constant innovation, with their future sustainable development dependent on sharing and collaboration. Full article
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18 pages, 652 KiB  
Article
Sustainable Development of Fintech: Focused on Uncertainty and Perceived Quality Issues
by Hyun-Sun Ryu and Kwang Sun Ko
Sustainability 2020, 12(18), 7669; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12187669 - 17 Sep 2020
Cited by 55 | Viewed by 8175
Abstract
Despite high expectations for the growth of Fintech, it has not reached the expected growth in the real world. As Fintech is innovative but inherently unpredictable, customers are still hesitant to adopt and use Fintech, which ultimately affects its growth. To achieve the [...] Read more.
Despite high expectations for the growth of Fintech, it has not reached the expected growth in the real world. As Fintech is innovative but inherently unpredictable, customers are still hesitant to adopt and use Fintech, which ultimately affects its growth. To achieve the sustainable development and growth of Fintech, an in-depth investigation of Fintech continuance intentions is required. To investigate continuous-use behavior in a Fintech context, this study focuses on two relevant issues: uncertainty and information technology (IT) quality. Uncertainty is more critical in Fintech than in traditional e-banking transactions because Fintech transactions are complicated and less predictable. IT quality is also crucial to Fintech success because IT plays a key role in Fintech transactions. This study mainly explores the relationship between uncertainty and IT quality, both of which significantly affect Fintech continuance intentions. For the purpose, we integrated an IT quality–based perspective with a trust-based model to investigate Fintech continuance intentions. Our results demonstrate that system quality is negatively related to perceived risk, whereas information quality is positively related to trust. Service quality is the most important quality factor for controlling uncertainty and encouraging continued use of Fintech. We found a more extended role of IT in Fintech than in other digital services. This study provides Fintech providers with the practical guidance in the design and implementation of Fintech innovation, thereby achieving the sustainable development of Fintech. Full article
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Review

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19 pages, 292 KiB  
Review
Fintech and Sustainability: Do They Affect Each Other?
by Cristina Chueca Vergara and Luis Ferruz Agudo
Sustainability 2021, 13(13), 7012; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13137012 - 22 Jun 2021
Cited by 120 | Viewed by 18617
Abstract
Current concerns about environmental issues have led to many new trends in technology and financial management. Within this context of digital transformation and sustainable finance, Fintech has emerged as an alternative to traditional financial institutions. This paper, through a literature review and case [...] Read more.
Current concerns about environmental issues have led to many new trends in technology and financial management. Within this context of digital transformation and sustainable finance, Fintech has emerged as an alternative to traditional financial institutions. This paper, through a literature review and case study approach, analyzes the relationship between Fintech and sustainability, and the different areas of collaboration between Fintech and sustainable finance, from both a theoretical and descriptive perspective, while giving specific examples of current technological platforms. Additionally, in this paper, two Fintech initiatives (Clarity AI and Pensumo) are described, as well as several proposals to improve the detection of greenwashing and other deceptive behavior by firms. The results lead to the conclusion that sustainable finance and Fintech have many aspects in common, and that Fintech can make financial businesses more sustainable overall by promoting green finance. Furthermore, this paper highlights the importance of European and global regulation, mainly from the perspective of consumer protection. Full article
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