Latam - UK Programme

Fintech for Inclusion aims to advance financial inclusion in Latin America and the United Kingdom by creating synergies between both regions. According to the Inter American Development Bank, 46% of the adult population in Latin America did not have a bank account in 2017. Likewise in the United Kingdom, over 1 million people were reported not to have a bank account. Having a bank account is a widely used measure for financial inclusion because it facilitates financial transactions, increasing the likelihood that underserved populations will save or invest. In turn, greater investment would improve the financial literacy of the population as well. These numbers are representative of deeper inequalities in the region and a common measure of the lack of financial inclusion. Hence, advancing financial inclusion is a key priority in both regions. Importantly, financial inclusion can advance 13 out of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals set by the United Nations.


Financial technology, or simply fintech, is the use of innovative technologies to deliver financial services. The fintech sector has opened the pathway for innovation to create new financial services within the context of the fourth industrial revolution. The growing opportunity for fintech to widen financial inclusion led Shaping Horizons to adopt it as the focus of its work in 2020-2021.

Fintech for Inclusion is a three-stage open innovation process designed by Shaping Horizons to ignite projects and promote international collaboration. The process, described in detail further below, is separated in three stages (pre-incubation, ideation, acceleration) and the teams are provided with innovation tools created by the Shaping Horizons Team. Teams that successfully complete the ideation stage, while implementing and advancing their projects, will be eligible for non-equity financing. Up to £25,000 is available to be distributed among teams. Moreover, an equivalent of £10,000 will be further distributed among the best team/s to cover training activities at the University of Cambridge, all expenses covered. At this stage, Shaping Horizons will also facilitate scalability and provide tools for measuring social impact. The topics of the programme are Loans and Microcredits; Savings and Investments; Payment Methods and Financial Education. This programme is co-organised with Global Shapers Buenos Aires Hub, the Accelerator Lab of the United Nations Development Programme in Argentina and the United Nations Volunteering Programme. It is further supported by our partners comprising of the United Nations Development Programme in Mexico, Universidad Nacional de San Martín and Ashoka.



The programme will focus on the following key strategic areas: 

  • Loans and Microcredits: solutions that aim to increase the financial resources of those who need it to maintain their activities or livelihoods. Some recent examples include: micro-credits, crowdlending, and many more.

  • Savings and Investments: solutions that aim to increase the financial resources of people and/or organisations. Some recent examples include: fixed-term savings, crowdfunding, stocks, and many more.

  • Payment methods: solutions for people and/or organisations that allow the exchange of goods. Some examples include: credit cards, pins, QR codes, facial recognition, fingerprints, and many more.

  • Financial Education: teaching or assisting, through consulting for personal or enterprise purposes.




• Have experience in fintech or financial inclusion. 

• More than one year of experience working in either LatAm or the UK in one of the following Fintech categories: Lending, Payments, Savings and Financial Education.


•  20 to 32 years old.

• Needs to have lived in at least one of the following regions during the past three years: LatAm, the Caribbean, and/or the UK.


• Open to diverse roles and sectors: from employing technical skills in the workplace to being involved in Latin America and/or the UK’s social and economic development; private/public sectors; academia and/or NGOs. 


•  Advanced English. 

• Values collaborative work, believes in innovation through collaboration and alliances, and has a good track record as a team player.


• Can analyse problems from a critical, integrative point of view; can suggest concrete solutions and/or has already implemented them; shows ambition to improve/grow, with ideas as to how.

Please note that if you do not meet any of the criteria for participants we will soon open an applications for mentors where you will also take place in the programme and be part of the network!

Please visit our FAQs for questions or submit your query here


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