Cryptonomy and the future of finance for SWIFT

Envisioning emerging technologies affecting the future of finance for SWIFT.

6 years ago   •   2 min read

By Envisioning

Envisioning emerging technologies affecting the future of finance

By transforming how we exchange, count & store money, digital technology is fundamentally rewiring the financial sector.

Cryptographic currencies and distributed ledger technologies have proved scaleable, leading the way to more decentralized economies. We refer to this as the Cryptographic Economy, or Cryptonomy for short.

To illustrate the factors causing this change, we have documented hundreds of emerging technologies and organizations related to the financial sector. We visualize research findings through an interactive interface, and perform quantitative assessment using crowd and expert intelligence.

Our aim is to raise awareness about the future financial sector, spark conversation and generate insight.


Technology changes at an accelerating pace. Understanding how it evolves requires new frameworks and tools. We create tools for documenting and tracking emerging technology. In a world where technology increasingly affects society, we aim to show what's ahead.

The result is a highly interactive visualization tool, designed to convey complex data in a meaningful way.

  • 128+ technologies
    Descriptions, images and illustrations
  • Readiness & impact level
  • 256+ related attachments
    Sources and further reading
  • 256+ related organizations
    Startups and academic institutions


In a sense, every technology begins as an idea. Some spring from academic insights, some generated in R&D projects, while others can be found in the pages of science fiction. Ideas are found anywhere from sketchbooks to spec-sheets. Technology draws from the public imagination before becoming a reality.

Some of these ideas are further developed into concepts, beginning an experimental life of increased application. Some concepts become prototypes, tested at scale. Some prototypes eventually become products, bringing availability to the public.

A technology can take anywhere from a year to a decade to shift phase. Some develop slowly (think biotech and nanotech) while other move rapidly (think IT and mobile). Some are greatly affected by factors like regulation, while others move swiftly under the radar.

Regardless of speed, technologies progress through each phase in order. Most technologies never reach the product phase, but they invariably begin as ideas. Occasionally, organizations developing the technology fail to keep it a viable business (think Concorde) while the technology remains alive, eventually returning as a new business (see

Envisioning employs crowdsourcing to devise a virtual yardstick that measures the invisible line between an idea and its manifestation as a product.


Cryptonomy is a collaboration between Envisioning and Innotribe.The project was unveiled at Sibos 2016 in Geneva on 26 September.

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