Exploring the Evolutionary Path of Digital Financial Inclusion in Guangdong Province, China
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Digital inclusive finance
Impact pathways
Economic development level
Technological innovation
Fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA)



Submitted : 2024-01-26
Accepted : 2024-02-10
Published : 2024-02-25


This study explores the development trajectory of digital financial inclusion in 21 cities in Guangdong Province through fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA). The findings emphasize that the success of digital financial inclusion goes beyond individual dimensions, forming a systematic initiative marked by multifaceted interaction among different disciplines. In the trajectory of high-level digital inclusive finance development, the study identifies economic prosperity and technological innovation as crucial elements, highlighting their centrality, and elucidates the synergistic collaboration between market mechanisms and government guidance. Furthermore, the study emphasizes the government’s pivotal role in supporting market mechanisms and guiding policies, highlighting the need to achieve a nuanced equilibrium in the digital financial inclusion strategy. In contrast, non-high-level development paths of digital inclusive finance show a spectrum of diversities, emphasizing the critical roles played by economic fundamentals, government regulation, market mechanisms, and other contextual factors in different trajectories. Regarding policy implications, the study emphasizes the comprehensive and systemic nature inherent in the development of digital inclusive finance. It proposes four policy recommendations, including integrating development strategies, emphasizing scientific and technological innovation and economic development, achieving a delicate balance between market mechanisms and government guidance, and providing precise policy support. These insights provide valuable lessons for shaping digital inclusive financial policies in Guangdong Province and beyond, offering profound insights for strategically constructing robust digital financial ecosystems.


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