Course 2022-2023 a.y.


Department of Finance

Course taught in English
Go to class group/s: 31
M (6 credits - I sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/11)
Course Director:

Classes: 31 (I sem.)

Suggested background knowledge

None, in particular. Although it is suggested that students have attended the basic course in Financial Markets and Institutions in order to fully exploit the value of the course.

Mission & Content Summary


The FinTech revolution is rapidly transforming the financial industry. In this process, financial technology firms (FinTech), the Internet giants, and the incumbent financial institutions are all changing the way the financial industry is developing and delivering its value and related services. The FinTech phenomenon has evolved from startups that want to take on and beat incumbents, to a broader ecosystem of different and interconnected businesses looking in many cases also for partnerships with financial institutions. The use of digital advanced technologies, such as Open-API, cloud, algorithms, BigData, etc. is moving banking into a tech-data industry also transforming the industry in terms of its regime and structure. Many market positions are put into question as the conditions for a successful business are changing. The role of finance has changed from being a provider of financial products and services to an “enabler” for them (such as Robo-adviser, peer-to-peer lending, peer-to-peer payment, etc.). This course develops an in-depth examination of the FinTech revolution and outlines the many ways digitalization is transforming the market conditions in the financial services industries. The aim of the course is to provide an adequate representation of strategies, actions, tools, ways of execution, and their related managerial implications and consequences.


The setting of the course is interdisciplinary, to take account of the different profiles relevant to managing both the banks and the FinTech companies as business services. Given that the course is focused on providing professional knowledge and effective tools, and in order to pursue these goals, we assume a dual perspective of analysis, namely:

  • Those working within banks (especially retail and private banks), and FinTech companies and also interested in developing their own FinTech company.
  • Those who, for various reasons, are called to collaborate with banks as external partners (consultants, venture capitalists, technology vendors, and others).


The course is developed over four parallel strands:

  • The first analyses the FinTech revolution, its drivers (technology, regulation, customers’ attitudes, and competitive advantages), business models according to the product areas (money and payments, investment and wealth management, consumer credit, and lending), and trends.
  • The second is understanding the market structure and its digital transformation (supply-demand value chain, platforms, and ecosystems in the financial industries).
  • The third is focusing on bank and FinTech frameworks of collaboration (competition versus collaboration) to learn how banks embrace the change.
  • The fourth is developing a forward-looking approach to new banking realities (new layers of banking, new types of banks, new winning business models, the differentiation between players, etc.). Particular attention will also be devoted to describing open banking and open finance paradigms.


The whole course is supported by examples, case studies, guest speakers, and live discussions on the main topics, for which active class participation is essential.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILO)


At the end of the course student will be able to...

Approach all aspects of FinTech innovation with a special focus on the transformation of the industry essence and its revenue-sharing mechanism: from transactions (distribution channel of products) to services-driven approaches (from pipeline to platforms business models).


This perspective is also useful to understand how to digitize a financial institution focusing on a real client-centricity focus, which requires an interdisciplinary approach.


Students will also gain knowledge and a critical thinking perspective in three important areas of banking and in its innovation processes:

  • Technology transformation and related business models impact.
  • FinTech ecosystem and the related finance and banking core competencies.
  • Risks and regulation.


They will also develop a theoretical and practical understanding of the main forces which are transforming financial services globally, and the many different managerial and entrepreneurial challenges.


At the end of the course student will be able to...
  • Evaluate critically the empirical evidence related to the evolving structure of banking as a business and the main strategies different actors are developing in the market.
  • Appraise the role of banks and FinTech companies in a modern society (value propositions, customer relationships and risk assessment).
  • Evaluate the impact of the main environmental forces of change on the strategies and performance of both banks and FinTech companies.
  • Understand the regulatory challenges posed by FinTech companies and digital transformation.
  • Conduct an independent search and review of specialized academic and non-academic literature on banking, and identify and evaluate relevant information.

Teaching methods

  • Face-to-face lectures
  • Online lectures
  • Guest speaker's talks (in class or in distance)
  • Case studies /Incidents (traditional, online)
  • Group assignments
  • Interactive class activities (role playing, business game, simulation, online forum, instant polls)


In order to propose a close link between theory and practice, exposure to fundamental theoretical concepts is supported by examples, business cases, and class discussions thanks to the presence of professionals from different institutions, such as banks, FinTech companies, consulting firms, and supervisory authorities. Each of them brings their own particular perspective to the course.


The course is designed to be interactive. You are expected and encouraged to take part in class discussions. We want to deepen your understanding of the economics of FinTech, and banks and also encourage your creative and entrepreneurial spirit. Therefore, students are expected to read, whenever required, the materials before class.


  • Face-to-Face lectures.
  • Online live classes - if needed by the Covid conditions that might require this switch option - will be overall used to explain syllabus topics, discuss them and outline practical examples.
  • Active readings. These sessions require students to read papers/articles/reports and similar and analyze them while making comments according to a set of guidelines.
  • Guest speakers' talks. We have a number of sessions with outside experts including consultants, founders of early-stage start-ups, and executives in financial services, and venture capitalists.
  • Groups projects. They are designed :
    • to help students upgrade their personal thinking
    • to evaluate the impact of FinTech on the strategies and performance of banks
    • to evaluate the resiliency of FinTechs business models
    • to develop - at the end of the semester - their own FinTech business idea, by developing an entrepreneurial project - which is a prototype for a new venture –
    • to develop group working and collaboration and be able to present projects to the class.

Assessment methods

  Continuous assessment Partial exams General exam
  • Written individual exam (traditional/online)
  • Group assignment (report, exercise, presentation, project work etc.)
  • Active class participation (virtual, attendance)
  • Peer evaluation


Students can choose the attending status, and this option can offer different learning experiences and a different valuation process. In this case, the final evaluation takes into account:

  • Active class participation (10% of the final grade) is aimed at testing the student's ability to interact in a multicultural environment and think critically through contributions given to the class discussion. This will be developed through a set of active reading sessions and in addition, active class participation also means attending 75% of the 48 hours of the course. 
  • Critical Thinking Session – CTS - (20% of the final grade): from a specific research question, students in groups have to develop their own analysis of the topic and then perform their presentation to the class. This is designed for the purpose of verifying the students' ability to:
    • Identify and analyze a set of issues related to a given topic.
    • Apply the appropriate tools and methodologies they have learned in class.
    • Work on a team, organize and present effectively the relevant outcomes.
  • Final Group Assignment (30% of the final grade) at the end of the teaching semester.
  • Written exam (40% of the final grade). The contents refer to selected parts of the textbook and the material made available on the course website (technical notes, readings, and slides), in addition to the evidence from the guest speakers, which are an integral part of the course and therefore the final exam. The written exam consists of two open questions essay styles.


Attending status and related scores will be considered for the following exams: December 21st, 2021; January 11th, 2022; January 26th, 2022.



The exam is written (100% of the final grade).

The contents refer to the textbook and the material made available on the Course website (technical notes, readings, and slides) as detailed in the syllabus.


The final evaluation is exclusively by written examination and it is not possible to integrate marks obtained in group work, which can only be carried out by attending students.


The written exam consists of a set of open questions essay style.

Teaching materials


  • Book:

Omarini A., 2019, Banks and Banking: Digital Transformation and the Hype of Fintech. Business impacts, new frameworks, and managerial implications, McGraw-Hill

The book is also available as eBook at




  • Other relevant materials (articles, cases, class notes, news articles, slides) are posted on the Bboard and/or handed out in class.


Further details on the fewer selected parts for the attending students will be provided later. 


  • Book:

Omarini A., 2019, Banks and Banking: Digital Transformation and the Hype of Fintech. Business impacts, new frameworks, and managerial implications, McGrawHill

The book is also available as eBook at





  • Other relevant materials (articles, cases, class notes, news articles, slides) are posted on the Bboard and/or handed out in class.
Last change 14/06/2022 11:02