Lancaster University is launching a new research project to examine how money will look and work in 10 years’ time.
Improvements in digital technologies have raised the possibility that we might abandon the use of cash, in favour of wholly digital or mobile currencies.
Dr John Carter McKnight, Research Associate at the university’s Sociology department, is one of the organisers of the project called ‘The Future of Money – A Design Conversation’.
He explained: “We are investigating the prospects for new technologies – digital and mobile, among others – to change the nature of money and personal finance over the next decade.
“We are also examining how people think about, talk about, and use money and financial products in daily life. And how products that could be designed with current technology might be used to meet their needs better than those that are available today.”
The research team hope their work will lead to improvements in the way we will access financial services in the future.
Dr McKnight added: “By studying how users of money and other financial products would like to be able to manage transactions, we hope to offer insights into the design of current financial technology that are based on examples from the real world.”
A crucial part of the research will be giving people in Lancashire the chance to put their mouth where their money is and invest some time in predicting the future.
The university’s Sociology Department has organised a series of interactive workshops to examine the subject – and people don’t need to be economics’ experts to take part.
Workshops will take place at several locations in and around Lancaster.
Dr McKnight said: “Each workshop will welcome up to ten people: we’re keeping them small so everyone can participate and get hands-on with those design tools.
“We think it’s going to be a really informative exercise, and we’re looking forward to hearing how people view the future and how money will look and be used ten years from now.”