From distributed ledgers and smart contracts, to data mining, algorithmic trading, and robo-advisors - new technologies are rapidly changing the face of the financial services industry. These technologies hold out the promise of more efficient financial intermediation, deeper and more liquid financial markets, and enhanced choice for consumers of financial products. Yet many of the new financial market players and institutions that have sought to capitalize on these technologies are also the source of potentially significant and poorly understood risks. The often-praised absence of intermediation, for example, may also be one these new markets’ greatest problems - with investors left to their own devices without appropriate guidance from more sophisticated players. Such risks pose a range of challenges for policymakers responsible for promoting consumer and investor protection, ensuring the safety and soundness of financial institutions, and safeguarding the financial system from widespread panic and instability.

Against this backdrop, the editors of the Journal of Financial Regulation have selected ‘New Frontiers: Technology, Finance, and Regulation’ as the theme of its 2018 annual conference. This conference will seek to explore a broad range of regulatory issues in relation to, inter alia, the following technological developments:

- The use of distributed ledger technology and smart contracts in the provision of financial services
- The emergence of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ether, the associated market infrastructure, and initial coin offerings (ICOs)
- The rise of ‘fintech’ and the increasing use of data mining techniques in the financial services industry
- The use of robo-advisors in the provision of retail financial services
- The emergence and growth of non-bank payment systems
- The potential development of digital currencies by central banks 

The conference is kindly hosted by the University of Oxford, Faculty of Law, and will take place on the 29th of June 2018. There is no registration fee, and seats are limited. To register, please contact joanna.mckenna@law.ox.ac.uk, stating your name and affiliation. A draft version of the conference agenda is as follows:

8:30 am – 9:00 am

Registration and coffee

9:00 am

Welcome from the editors

9:15am-10:00am

Keynote Address (title tbc)

Tim Wu, Columbia Law School

10:00am-10:40am

Session 1: Frontiers in Money

John Crawford (UC Hastings) (title tbc) discussant: Bob Hockett (Cornell Law School)

10:40am-11:10am

Coffee

11:10am-12:30pm

Session 2: Frontiers in Payment Systems

Paper 1: Paolo Siciliani (Bank of England), ‘The competition impact of providing access to the central bank’s balance sheet to non-bank payment operators’

Paper 2: Jonathan Greenacre (Tufts university), ‘The shadow payment system in Africa’

Discussant: Eva Micheler (London School of Economics)

12:30pm-1:30pm

Lunch

1:30pm-2:10pm

Session 3: Frontiers in Financial Intermediation

Saule Omarova (Cornell Law School), ‘Fintech and Middlemen’

Discussant: Jay Cullen (University of Sheffield) (tbc)

2:10pm-2:50pm

Session 4: Frontiers in Financial Supervision

Veerle Colaert (Leuven), ‘Regtech as a response to regulatory expansion in the

financial sector’

Discussant: Trude Myklebust (University of Oslo)
2:50pm-3:20pm

Coffee

3:20pm-4:30pm

Session 5: Frontiers in Practice (Panel Discussion)

Simon Gleeson (Clifford Chance), Bob Penn (Cleary Gottlieb), Claire Wells (Circle), Dick Berner (NYU)

4:30pm

Drinks reception