In the News
Evidence-Based Decision Making for Financial Inclusion, Microfinance Gateway, May 2013
Aishwarya Ratan, Director of the Global Financial Inclusion Initiative, and Beniamino Savonitto, Director of the Citi IPA Financial Capability Research Fund supported by the Citi Foundation, have a new post up on the Microfinance Voices blog at Microfinance Gateway. In it, they discuss the approach taken by IPA's Global Financial Inclusion Initiative towards encouraging evidence-based decision making for financial inclusion. Amongst other things, they touch upon the research methods workshops and partnership development programs organized by the initiative. Read the full post at Microfinance Gateway.
Putting Impact Research Into Practice, CGAP Blog Series, January-February 2013
An ongoing CGAP blog series, Putting Impact Research Into Practice, invites practitioners to comment on the implications and relevance of research findings presented at the financial inclusions sessions of the Impact and Policy Conference in Bangkok. We recommend reading the entire series. One place to start might be Betty Wilkinson's post on two financial capability studies that were presented at the conference, including findings from the Aflatoun study in Ghana conducted by Jim Berry, Dean Karlan and Menno Pradhan. Other posts include Sandra Darville on the external validity implications of findings from a study conducted by Silvia Prina in Nepal that provided access to simple savings accounts.
Measuring Impact Through Field Experiments, PopTech/SSIR, January 2013
Following her participation at the recent PopTech gathering, GFII Director Aishwarya Ratan has an entry in PopTech Editions III "Made to Measure: The New Science of Impact". Reproduced on the SSIR blog, Aishwarya discusses the importance of using impact evaluations to figure out what development interventions work best. Amongst other things, Aishwarya discusses findings from an IPA project in Kenya that looked at transaction costs, bargaining power, and savings account use. Make sure to read the entire post, and to also check out the Q&A in the same PopTech edition with IPA President Dean Karlan.
Dean Karlan, Poptech, November 2012
Our founder and president, Dean Karlan, spoke recently at the PopTech gathering of innovative thinkers. He gave a wide ranging talk on how we talk and think about credit, debt, and poverty in the developing world. A video of Aishwarya Ratan, Director of the Global Financial Inclusion Initiative, speaking at the same event can also be viewed below.
Citi Foundation: Investing in Products, Access and People for Financial Inclusion, Forbes, November 2012
President and CEO of the Citi Foundation, Pamela P. Flaherty, has an article on Forbes.com. In it, she discusses the Citi Foundation's research partnerships in the areas of financial inclusion and financial capability with organizations like the Center for Financial Services Innovation, and Innovations for Poverty Action.
Aishwarya Ratan, Poptech, November 2012
Aishwarya Ratan, Director of the Global Financial Inclusion Initiative, was at PopTech to discuss how we can ensure that the financial products, services, and tools available to the poor to manage and grow their money are affordable, efficient, secure and welfare-enhancing.
Dean Karlan, The MacMillan Report, October 2012
Dean Karlan recently appeared on The MacMillan Report to discuss the Citi IPA Financial Capability Research Fund supported by the Citi Foundation, and his work on finding strategies to improve the financial capability of low and moderate income individuals across the world. Watch the entire inteview below:
Moving Beyond Access for Meaningful Financial Inclusion: Targeting investments to improve financial capability, NextBillion, August 2012
In a post on NextBillion 2.0, IPA's Aishwarya Ratan and Beniamino Savonitto discuss the new research questions that the Global Financial Inclusion initiative is planning to tackle with the Citi IPA Financial Capability Research Fund, a competitive research fund recently launched with the support of the Citi Foundation.
Starting Young: Inculcating Savings Behavior among Young People at School, YFS-Link, July 2012
Check out this blog post on the YFS-Link blog, discussing findings from a recently completed impact evaluation of a financial education program for youth in Ghana. The post was authored by IPA's Aishwarya Ratan and Elana Safran. A video pesenting the main take-aways from the study is available here.
IPA and the Citi Foundation Launch Fund to Create Evidence on Financial Capability, June 2012
Innovations for Poverty Action and the Citi Foundation announced the creation of the Citi IPA Financial Capability Research Fund supported by the Citi Foundation. The $3.4 million program focusing on emerging economies seeks to incubate, develop, and rigorously study products and product-linked interventions to improve the financial capability of the poor.
The Citi IPA Financial Capability Research Fund is supported by the Citi Foundation and will administer a competitive project solicitation process inviting expressions of interest from teams of practitioners and researchers seeking to test products and interventions aimed at improving the behavior of users of financial services.
Finding the Right Knot for Each Odysseus: Innovations in Commitment Savings, USAID Microlinks, May 2012
IPA's Aishwarya Ratan and Alex Kobishyn, in collaboration with Bobbi Gray of Freedom from Hunger, have a post up on the USAID Microlinks blog. In it, they discuss commitment savings, one of the programs selected by the Proven Impact Initiative at IPA. For more information on Commitment Savings and the Proven Impact Initiative, click here.
Aishwarya Ratan, Global Financial Inclusion Initiative Director, on IPA's Financial Inclusion Work, April 2012
USAID Announces New Grant on The Role of Mobile Banking in Expanding Trade Credit and Business Development in Kenya, November 2011
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) announced that it will fund an IPA project intending to facilitate small business growth in Kenya. Details about the evaluation can be found on the project’s summary page. Further details about the partnership are also available on the USAID Impact Blog.
Dean Karlan and Brooke Berman discuss Microsavings and Microfinance, Microfinance USA Conference, May 2011
Dean Karlan was at the Microfinance USA conference to discuss the emergence of microsavings as the most promising angle for microfinance, as well as the importance of rigorous evaluation. He also used the platform to reach out to new partners for IPA's US Household Finance Initiative (USHFI). IPA's Brooke Berman spoke about her work with USHFI, where alongside academic director Prof. Jonathan Zinman she is working with consumer finance firms to develop and test new products based on insights from behavioral economics, to help nudge consumers into actions that are better for them and the company.
Dean Karlan Discusses Microsavings, Yale Daily Bulletin, March 2011
In an interview with the Yale Daily Bulletin, Dean Karlan discussed the state of microsavings and payments research, the grant from the Gates Foundation to fund research in these areas, and the Microsavings and Payments Innovation Initiative (since renamed the Global Financial Inclusion Initiative).
Dean Karlan on New Microsavings Research Agenda, New Haven Register, January 2011
The New Haven Register interviewed Dean Karlan about IPA's microsavings research agenda and a grant from the Gates Foundation that will fund research on microsavings and payments innovations.