Innovate Finance Global Summit, London – 15 April 2024 – Project Nemo, a pioneering disability inclusion initiative launches today, urging the fintech industry to better serve the UK’s largest minority and accelerate disability inclusion efforts. 

More than 1 in 5 people live with a disability in the UK, representing an estimated £274 billion a year in spending power1. In spite of the fact that 24% of the British working age population has a disclosed disability, there is also anecdotal evidence indicating low levels of disability employment in UK fintech2.

Project Nemo is a 12-month initiative, providing a wake up call and step change in disability inclusion across the fintech industry. It is focused on long-term systemic change in three ways:

  1. Educating: Improving awareness of the barriers and opportunities for fintech to be more inclusive to those with disabilities and lived experiences. 
  2. Empowering: Connecting fintech business leaders, allies, advocates and those with lived experience to a toolkit of resources and expertise that will enable them to build inclusive workplaces, products and services.
  3. Showcasing: Sharing and celebrating progress.

A cornerstone of the initiative is Project Nemo’s Fintech Festival of Inclusion, an events programme to empower fintech business leaders to adopt incremental changes as part of their longer term inclusion journey. Each workshop event will bring together disability expertise, champions and success stories with the fintech community, to help fintech leaders implement change. The outputs of each workshop will contribute to a practical guide with case studies, culminating with a complete e-book and podcast series for the fintech community.

The launch of Project Nemo is officially announced today by disability inclusion champion and fintech industry leader, Joanne Dewar. Jo is taking to the stage at Innovate Finance Global Summit with best-selling fintech author and commentator, Chris Skinner, calling on fintech organisations to join the initiative.

Jo Dewar, Project Nemo lead, says: “What started as isolated conversations a year ago have rapidly gathered momentum and, in just a few short months we are launching at IFGS. I have long held the mantle on equity and inclusion in fintech and yet I have never received such unequivocal support and personal resonance around one issue - disability inclusion. It is a massive missed opportunity for fintech.

“Fintech thinks of itself as the future of financial services, and we have made great strides in streamlining, broadening reach and lowering costs. But if we ever want to truly achieve mainstream adoption beyond the digital natives, we need to ensure that our workplaces, all of our products and services fully consider accessibility.

Project Nemo will kickstart conversations, convene allies and connect experts. The initiative’s goal is to create a lasting legacy of continual progress towards a more inclusive fintech industry and services.

  1. Purple Goat Agency:What is the Purple Pound, 2023
  2. ONS:Labour Force Survey, 2023
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