IIM Raipur’s International Conference on Digital Economy (ICDE) was successfully completed on 9th February 2019. The conference, being the first of its kind witnessed proficient academicians, experienced corporates and aspiring research students from various prestigious institutions. The two day packed conference definitely added weight in terms of knowledge and ideas to all the attendees.


The second day’s proceedings started off with a workshop conducted by Prof. Lakshmi Iyer, Appalachian State University on the topic ‘Workshop on Analytics Resources for Teaching and Research’. Various analytics tools and software were introduced to the attendees. The students were so enamoured by the workshop that most of them decided to try out these tools right away for their further research.

The workshop was followed by a talk by Mr. Satya Shankar Mahapatra, Senior Vice President, Barclays. He spoke on the topic ‘Banking Re-imagined’. The talk essentially revolved around contemporary banking techniques and how they would evolve in the future. Insights into various technologies used in the banking sector kept everyone glued to their seats throughout the talk. Phrases such as ‘Banking without bankers’, ‘payments without middlemen’, ‘choice without brands’, ‘security without privacy’, etc. defined the future of the banking and financial services sector.


Mr. Mahapatra laid emphasis on the advantages of block-chain technology and how it can be used to enhance security and efficiency in the banking system. He went on to demonstrate the functioning of this technology displaying use cases. Other topics discussed during the talk included the challenges faced by the banking sector, increasing importance of cyber risk management, ESG investments (Environment, Social impact, Government), etc.

During the latter part of the day, parallel track sessions took place on the broad topics Banking and Financial Services and Digital Innovation and Societal Impact.

The first section of the Banking and Financial Services section was Electronic Payments and Cryptocurrencies. Prof. Radhakrishna Pillai, IIM Kozhikode and Prof. R.K. Jana, IIM Raipur served as the technical session chairs. Papers presented included ideas such as the cryptographic weaknesses and remedies of cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin, the advent of P-AAS as an innovative system of micropayments, and cryptocurrency’s general nature as an alternative form of currency and the question of its decentralization.


The next section was on Fintech and Financial Inclusion, chaired by Shri Sanjay Bobde, National Institute of Smart Governance and Prof. Vinay Goyal, IIM Raipur. The papers presented included a microanalysis of e-finance in the Indian context, an empirical study of banking in rural India, a review of Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojna from a public policy perspective and how a lack of education proves a major hurdle towards financial inclusion in India among others.
The last section of this session was focused on Financial Technology and Blockchain, and had its session chairs in Shri Satya Shankar Mahapatra, Barclays and Prof. M. Kannadhasan, IIM Raipur. The papers here focused on usage of blockchain in stock markets, blockchain based smart contracts and their applications and a general study on blockchain adoption in private and public sectors.

The first section under the Digital Innovation and Societal Impact session was on Digital Innovation and Entrepreneurship, chaired by Dr. Rajeev Roy, 36Inc Raipur, and Prof. Satyasiba Das, IIM Raipur. The ideas presented included a morphological view of digital urbanism, how technology may change the game by creating investment awareness, a conceptual and analytical framework of how mutual fund manager performances be viewed in a digital economy, relationship between job satisfaction, self efficacy and entrepreneurial intentions, and ensuring the future security of smallholders farming through ergonomic design of sustainable enterprises. The next two sections - Social Impact of Digitalization 1 & 2 - were chaired by Shri Piyush Kumar, Bhilai Steel Plant, Prof. Dhananjay Bapat, IIM Raipur, Shri A.K. Somsekhar, National Informatics Center Raipur, and Prof. Pankaj Singh, IIM Raipur respectively. The papers presented were on compelling ideas such as the effect of digitalization on work-life balance, effect of digitization on differently abled people, digital transformation in the Indian automobile industry, digital transformation of small business houses, the impact of IT on financial management of FMCG industry in India, among countless others.


The two day event came to an end with a Valedictory Session. Prof. Satyasiba Das, IIM Raipur, presented the Conference Report in which he announced the papers chosen to be published in the Asia Pacific Journal of Information Systems and Pacific Asia Journal of the Association of Information Systems. He also announced that the best ones out of the rest of the papers will be invited for a book chapter. Prof. Bharat Bhasker, Conference Chair and Director, IIM Raipur, elucidated the importance of constant innovation and growth. “Disrupt yourself before others disrupt you”, he said. He also spoke about the colonization  of data and how this is such a great time for Indians as any technology can be absorbed and utilized at a very fast pace. He further thanked the audience for being participant to this global transformation and hoped that together they will form policies to lead the digital era. Mr. Arvind Kumar of TCS spoke of the behavioral aspects of digital economy like mass customisation, personalisation, leveraging the ecosystem, especially the competition, and embracing risks. He further talked about the underlying aspects like trust, security, data protection and privacy necessary for digital economy. Lastly, Prof. Samar Singh of IIM Raipur concluded the event by thanking everyone in attendance on behalf of the institute.

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