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Promoting Financial Awareness and Stability

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - PROFIT (Promoting Financial Awareness and Stability)

Reporting period: 2017-07-01 to 2018-12-31

The PROFIT Platform is designed as a solution catering to the exact need of action enhancement for greater financial awareness and capabilities of EU citizen.

WHY
Recent global economic and financial developments have brought to the fore of the policy agenda the need for citizens to follow and understand financial trends and threats, national accounts and economic developments. The ultimate goal is the promotion of more responsible and prudent personal financial behaviour. From an open-democracy perspective, it can be conducive to more active forms of participation and citizenship.

HOW
Develop a platform with the following functionalities:
* Personal financial educational toolkits available to the wider public
* Crowdsourcing tools that will process financial data and extract and present collective knowledge
* Advanced forecasting models that exploit the market sentiment in order to identify market trends and threats
* Novel personalized recommendation systems to support financial management according to the user’s profile
* Reputation-based incentive mechanisms to encourage the active participation and contribution of citizens through many different channels (e.g. posting & rating of financial articles, voting in relevant polls, questions & answers forums)
The project activities are organized into eight (8) work packages (WPs), briefly presented below:

WP1 − Requirements and Functional Design
The aim of this work package is to study and specify the requirements of the targeted users with respect to the proposed financial awareness platform, analysing and turning them into specifications. Based on this analysis, it will define and deliver a number of representative use cases and user scenarios to exemplify the novelties of the PROFIT platform. Finally, this work package will deal with the incentive mechanisms to encourage users’ participation as well as the definition of the personalised recommendation policies to provide decision support.

WP2 – Linked Data Life Cycle
The aim of this work package is to develop and establish a methodology for a data lifecycle, which is fully based on linked data principles and specifically adopted to the envisaged features being provided by the PROFIT platform. In its core, a constantly evolving semantic knowledge graph will be developed, which describes entities, relations, and business rules relevant to improve financial literacy, recommendation services and to enhance sentiment analysis. As a basic function of the semantic graph, information integration and aggregation of incoming sources will become more precise and can be managed in a more agile way.

WP3 − Financial Literacy for Informed Decision-Making
The main goal of this work package is to clarify and elucidate the conceptual nexus of the user’s financial literacy whilst formulating tools and assessment criteria for its measurement and targeted enhancement. WP3 will also develop performance, knowledge-based tests and self-assessment methods, which incorporate users’ feedback, to assess the levels of financial literacy. Based on the assessment criteria and feedback from WP1, it will generate the background material of the personal financial education toolkit, targeting personalised interventions for the enhancement of users’ financial literacy.

WP4 − Market Sentiment-based Financial Forecasting
The major aim of WP4 is to develop novel econometric and machine learning models for effectively forecasting financial variables and macroeconomic indices. In order to leverage the predictive power of these models, this work package will also create advanced sentiment analysis tools by relying on novel crowdsourced data and machine learning algorithms.

WP5 – System Design and Integration
After the analysis of the platform requirements, the R&D components produced by the different WPs will be integrated here providing the system as a whole. Testing of both the components is planned as part of the integration activities. To ensure that the integration runs smoothly, all subsystems will first be integrated in their own laboratory test-environments before the final integration is made. In this process, all partners will provide support in their own field of expertise. The aim is to offer a fully functional platform with the focus on validating the capabilities of the PROFIT architecture.

WP6 – Proof of Concept and Evaluation
The main objective of this WP is to deploy the use cases and assist in the validation and assessment of the PROFIT platform. Based on the achievements from the integration of the individual modules and the requirements analysis, this WP will set a methodology for demonstrating and testing the system and produce an assessment framework, which will specify the appropriate performance indicators and analyse the social innovation impact to all user groups and stakeholders and validate the suitability of the system.

WP7 − Dissemination and Exploitation
The main objective of this work package is to bring the PROFIT results closer to all parties from relevant scientific areas, business and market fields, social, and financial authorities that might be interested in the project results. Moreover, a detailed market assessment and analysis will be performed so as
Impact on financial behaviour of individuals
• Promotion of more responsible and prudent patterns of behaviour
Societal impact by promoting open democracy and informed decision-making
• Support the more active forms of participation and citizenship

Benefits to individuals and collective awareness through PROFIT PLATFORM:
* Personal financial educational toolkits
* Crowdsourcing tools - able to process financial data and extract and present collective knowledge
* Advanced forecasting models exploiting the market sentiment in order to identify market trends and threats
* Novel personalized recommendation systems supporting financial management according to the user’s profile
* Reputation-based incentive mechanisms encouraging the active participation and contribution of citizens

Benefits to Financial Institutions
* Identification of vulnerable population/customer groups, for which financial literacy training can improve real outcomes, in terms of financial inclusion, savings, indebtedness, retirement planning, etc.
* Establishment of novel training programmes and toolkits for specific population/customer groups of particular interest, i.e. children, elderly, females, and potential entrepreneurs.
* Financial risk assessment and action focused on above groups.
* Active response to modern market needs
* Action enhancement on the client protection and social-performance targets
* Compaibility with documented shifts in trends in needs of customers due to the complexity of financial products
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The PROFIT platform is the main expected result of project