MAP Global Insights Series

In the first six MAP pilot countries, financial inclusion – contrary to popular belief and despite millions of programming dollars – has in many ways not lived up to its promises. If we move away from a one-dimensional view of financial inclusion as the percentage of adults with a formal bank account, we find that formal financial services are in fact having a limited impact on people’s lives (or in some cases leaving people worse off). Indeed, many bank accounts remain dormant for long periods at a time, or are used only for withdrawing cash once wages are deposited. Cash and informal financial services remain the order of the day.

 

The insights from the first six MAP pilot countries is showing that for financial inclusion to deliver on its promise, a paradigm shift is required in how we think about financial inclusion. The MAP Global Insights series synthesises the evidence from the first six MAP study countries. By switching the lens through which we view financial inclusion – away from providers and governments to the consumer – we start to understand why financial inclusion is in many ways not working and, importantly, what providers, policymakers and donors can do to change this.

 

The MAP Global Insights series attempts to consolidate and synthesise the learnings from MAP across the MAP pilot countries. The first of the MAP Global Insights products comprises six thematic cross-country notes, based on the initial round of findings from the country diagnostic studies, which have been conducted in ThailandMyanmarSwazilandMozambiqueLesotho and Malawi.

 

decoding the customer Note 1 - Decoding the customer unpacks the target market segmentation approach that is central to the MAP methodology of putting the client at the core of the analysis. Note 1 provides a window into the emerging cross-country segments, and the implications for donors, policymakers and providers in this regard. Please click here to read more.
   
depth sounding

Note 2 - Depth sounding explores the shift in financial inclusion measurement away from focusing solely on access to more closely match the realities of how adults live their financial lives. It introduces a new measurement framework, which includes gauging depth of usage in financial inclusion, and explores the policy implications of moving away from a linear, one-dimensional view of financial inclusion. Please click here to read more.

   
homefield

Note 3 - Homefield advantage looks at the nature of informal financial services. It shows that it is the local nature of these financial services, rather than their informal nature, that makes them valuable for the majority of consumers in these countries. Please click here to read more.

   
lost in the mail graphic Note 4 - Lost in the mail considers the gap between ownership and usage of bank accounts. The note queries whether bank accounts are always the appropriate product for increasing customer welfare, and argues the need for a paradigm shift away from focusing on ownership to a focus on usage in the context of a wider, systems approach. Please click here to read more. Please click here to read more.
   
the king is not dead graphic Note 5 - The king is (not) dead focuses on cash as a payment instrument to explore the largely undiminished popularity of cash. The different payment needs of consumers are introduced, analysed and compared with regard to the use of cash versus digital instruments. Please click here to read more.
   
mapping the dna image Note 6 - Mapping the DNA draws together the findings from this Global Insights series. It shows that the MAP evidence calls for a rethink of conventional financial inclusion assumptions, based on a consumer decision-making framework that emphasises economic incentives, cost and value. Please click here to read more.
 

MAP Global Insights Series

In the first six MAP pilot countries, financial inclusion – contrary to popular belief and despite millions of programming dollars – has in many ways not lived up to its promises. If we move away from a one-dimensional view of financial inclusion as the percentage of adults with a formal bank account, we find that formal financial services are in fact having a limited impact on people’s lives (or in some cases leaving people worse off). Indeed, many bank accounts remain dormant for long periods at a time, or are used only for withdrawing cash once wages are deposited. Cash and informal financial services remain the order of the day.

 

The insights from the first six MAP pilot countries is showing that for financial inclusion to deliver on its promise, a paradigm shift is required in how we think about financial inclusion. The MAP Global Insights series synthesises the evidence from the first six MAP study countries. By switching the lens through which we view financial inclusion – away from providers and governments to the consumer – we start to understand why financial inclusion is in many ways not working and, importantly, what providers, policymakers and donors can do to change this.

 

The MAP Global Insights series attempts to consolidate and synthesise the learnings from MAP across the MAP pilot countries. The first of the MAP Global Insights products comprises six thematic cross-country notes, based on the initial round of findings from the country diagnostic studies, which have been conducted in ThailandMyanmarSwazilandMozambiqueLesotho and Malawi.

 

decoding the customer Note 1 - Decoding the customer unpacks the target market segmentation approach that is central to the MAP methodology of putting the client at the core of the analysis. Note 1 provides a window into the emerging cross-country segments, and the implications for donors, policymakers and providers in this regard. Please click here to read more.
   
depth sounding

Note 2 - Depth sounding explores the shift in financial inclusion measurement away from focusing solely on access to more closely match the realities of how adults live their financial lives. It introduces a new measurement framework, which includes gauging depth of usage in financial inclusion, and explores the policy implications of moving away from a linear, one-dimensional view of financial inclusion. Please click here to read more.

   
homefield

Note 3 - Homefield advantage looks at the nature of informal financial services. It shows that it is the local nature of these financial services, rather than their informal nature, that makes them valuable for the majority of consumers in these countries. Please click here to read more.

   
lost in the mail graphic Note 4 - Lost in the mail considers the gap between ownership and usage of bank accounts. The note queries whether bank accounts are always the appropriate product for increasing customer welfare, and argues the need for a paradigm shift away from focusing on ownership to a focus on usage in the context of a wider, systems approach. Please click here to read more. Please click here to read more.
   
the king is not dead graphic Note 5 - The king is (not) dead focuses on cash as a payment instrument to explore the largely undiminished popularity of cash. The different payment needs of consumers are introduced, analysed and compared with regard to the use of cash versus digital instruments. Please click here to read more.
   
mapping the dna image Note 6 - Mapping the DNA draws together the findings from this Global Insights series. It shows that the MAP evidence calls for a rethink of conventional financial inclusion assumptions, based on a consumer decision-making framework that emphasises economic incentives, cost and value. Please click here to read more.
 

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