Harris sees changing role for fintech companies in response to COVID-19 economic crisis

May 29, 2020

Since its inception, the fintech industry has seen consistent change and evolution. An article on Finovate published May 28, says the past few months have seen even more rapid change in this “extraordinary time”. 

In the article, Adrienne Harris Ford School Professor of Practice, Towsley Foundation Policymaker in Residence and a Gates Foundation Senior Research Fellow with the Center on Finance, Law, and Policy, says the fintech has yet to experience a downturn, since much of it was born out of the last financial crisis. That said, many are watching the industry closely to see how it will weather the storm.

She highlighted the hope that fintech tools will help repress some of the negative effects of the economic downturn. Harris predicts that as fintechs are impacted by the economic effects of the crisis, some will fold and others will fall short of meeting customer expectations. Because of this, she noted, we can expect to see more scrutiny from policymakers and regulators.

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Adrienne Harris is Professor of Practice at the Ford School and Towsley Foundation Policymaker in Residence and Senior Research Fellow with the Center on Finance, Law, and Policy. Prior to joining the Ford School, Harris was the chief business development officer and general counsel for insurance technology company States Title, Inc. She served as special assistant for economic policy to President Obama at the White House National Economic Council, focusing on issues including financial reform, financial technology, and housing finance reform. She had also served as a senior advisor to the deputy secretary in the U.S. Department of Treasury. She practiced law with the firm of Sullivan & Cromwell LLP. Harris earned her JD from Columbia Law School and her MBA with specializations in economics and Management from New York University.