Dr Katrin Tinn on Crowdfunding and

the Future Job Market


February, 2018

Dr Katrin Tinn, Assistant Professor of Finance at Imperial College Business School, gave her perspective on Innovation at Warwick Congress on Saturday, sharing her thoughts with students on recent financial innovations including reward-based crowdfunding and Blockchain.

It is not obvious that machines always do everything better

– Dr Katrin Tinn

Dr Tinn highlighted that a major advantage of reward-based crowdfunding is that the limited length of campaigns enables firms to credibly learn about demand and test out the market, with crowdfunding campaigns promising to deliver a good that doesn’t yet exist but will do at some point in the future. As a result, Dr Tinn stated that crowdfunding was useful in enabling trade in more complicated situations, especially when firms are unsure of how else they will fund the creation of a product.

Dr Tinn also shared her opinions on FinTech such as Blockchain, stating that it “makes finance more accessible” as it allows for faster data analysis, with such developments also increasing access to global financial systems, especially for those in developing countries who used to be excluded from such services. However, Dr Tinn remained critical of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin for reasons similar to Paul Andrews; namely that the value of Bitcoin isn’t anchored to traditional banking institutions and instead is dependent on the value that people believe it has.  

When asked if the rise of AI would have a negative impact upon humans accessing the job market, Dr Tinn remained cautious, saying: “It is not obvious that machines always do everything better”. Dr Tinn drew particular attention to the fact that AI which utilised data with an underlying bias would simply copy and perpetuate that bias, whereas a human would use their judgement to correct the bias. Similarly, Dr Tinn emphasised that AI runs on algorithms which are written by humans. Consequently, Dr Tinn stated that: “Human intervention will always be needed … humans will always continue to be important”.


Written by Natasha Rega-Jones. Edited by Keval Dattani.


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