The central goal of Work Package 11 named Foresight is to explore the possible evolution of financialisation, the financial sector and relevant policies over a 15 to 20 year time horizon.
Foresight is organised in seven tasks to reflect some of the main features of the host of structural changes in modern societies that goes under the label of financialisation, and that starting in early 1980s have had a great impact on the economy, society and natural environment. Task 1 sets the framework of the entire foresight analysis, including terms of reference. Tasks 2 to 6 are the core of Foresight. They draw on previous work done in FESSUD, with the objective of promoting a future-intelligence-gathering and medium-to-long-term vision-building process and a set of images of some of the main features of financialisation. Tasks 2 to 6 all feed in Task 7 which brings together the result of the entire foresight analysis. In the remaining of this short presentation of Foresight, the focus is on Task 2 and Task 3, which will soon be completed.
Task 2 led by the University of Basque Country team (Bilbao, Spain) uses a Delphi foresight survey to analyse the opinion of experts about the future expansion and proliferation of finance and financial products. The survey questionnaire is made of around 30 questions and includes questions on the geographical spread of financial markets and of financial institutions, as well as the future prospects for the scale of the financial sector, the development of financial instruments and services, and new types of financial institutions and markets. The Delphi survey involves repeated polling of the same experts, feeding back anonymised responses from earlier rounds of polling, with the idea that this allows for better judgements to be made. The survey is conducted in two rounds. The main results of Task 2 will be presented in a working paper which will be available on the FESSUD website early 2016.
Task 3, led by colleagues at Tallinn University of Technology (Estonia), fleshes out future regulatory problems and looks at their impact on innovations in the payments and financing systems in order to assess the kind of regulatory structure that would be needed to deal with such problems. The immediate aftermath of the 2007-2008 financial crisis has seen major debates on regulation and shifts away from de-regulation. It remains to be seen how far this re-regulation proceeds, how effective it becomes and whether there has been a break with the agenda of de-regulation and liberalisation. Drawing on previous FESSUD works, including various country studies, Task 3 maps the future of regulation, the development of regulation at the European and global level and how far the forces of liberalisation and de-regulation will re-assert themselves. Again, the main results of Task 3 will be presented in a working paper which will be available on the FESSUD website in the coming weeks.