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NextBillion Financial Innovation is a blog and news resource dedicated to improving financial access for low-income people around the world. 

The site, part of the NextBillion network, focuses on the businesses, issues and innovations that are making an impact on financial inclusion worldwide. It features a diverse collection of experts and practitioners, who share their knowledge, research and experiences in helping low-income people improve their lives and livelihoods.

The blog, which has been made possible by the Citi Foundation, serves as a space for discussion and debate, where readers can go to find fresh approaches and unconventional thinking. It also features job listings, news articles and event listings important to financial inclusion professionals.
 
Some of the topics featured on NextBillion Financial Innovation include:

  • Financial products: Advances in financial products to meet the needs of low-income people in the areas of microlending, microsavings, credit scoring and microinsurance, among others
  • Financial capability innovations and research: Developments in research and real-world initiatives for improving the financial capability of underserved and unbanked customers, regardless of geography
  • Technology: New innovations that harness mobile devices, mobile applications, and other technology to expand and deliver financial services and enable people to build financial capability
  • Business innovators: From startups to large banks, profiling some of the innovators who are deploying new financial products to help low-income customers secure credit to purchase a home, start a business or get an education
  • New approaches to investing: Innovative ways to maximize and assess impact investments across sectors to reach under-served communities
  • Discussion/Debate: Debates on the effectiveness of specific private enterprise approaches as well as government/aid agency and public policy efforts to improve financial inclusion
  • Knowledge: Coverage of important learnings and research shared at conferences, dedicated to financial inclusion dialogue and understanding

James Militzer serves as editor for the new blog. James, an accomplished writer and editor, is the former editor of NextBillion Health Care. He can be reached via email: jamesmil@umich.edu

Follow NextBillion Financial Innovation on Twitter @NextBillionFI.

FeaturesFEATURES

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Saturday, November 1, 2014

Weekly Roundup - 11/1/14: Apple Pay is here - should low-income consumers care?

By NextBillion Editor

As you may have heard, Apple launched a mobile payment app in the U.S. this week. Within three days, it had become the top mobile wallet in the country - and sparked some surprising resistance. We discuss the implications for low-income consumers in the U.S. and emerging markets, along with some good news in global development, in this Roundup.

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Friday, October 31, 2014

Prepaid Protections: An interview with Cecilia Frew, Head of U.S. Prepaid at Visa

By James Militzer — WDI

Prepaid debit cards are booming in the U.S., with consumers loading over $64 billion onto them in 2012. But due to regulatory uncertainty, there’s widespread confusion about their fees and terms. To address this, Visa is creating a special designation for cards that meet a set of consumer-friendly standards. We spoke with Cecilia Frew, Visa's Head of U.S. Prepaid, about the product.

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Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Red Flags: Over-indebtedness is the yang to microcredit’s yin

By Barbara Magnoni

While working to understand the experiences of clients suffering from severe over-indebtedness in the U.S., EA Consultants began to consider patterns that have emerged in lesser-developed countries. Barbara Magnoni, EA Consultants' president, discusses their research and its implications for microfinance.

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Monday, October 27, 2014

Connecting Assets to Impact: ImpactAssets 50 showcases private fund managers that deliver social and environmental impact as well as financial returns

By Lindsay Smalling

The ImpactAssets 50 - whose 2014 edition was released last week - is an annual showcase of 50 private fund managers that deliver social and environmental impact as well as financial returns. Its free, searchable database provides filtering by asset class, geographic region and issue area, and gives a detailed overview of each firm.

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Sunday, October 26, 2014

Twitter Top Ten - 10-26-14: Our favorite tweets of the week

By NextBillion Editor

We're continuing what we're calling a "pilot feature" here at NextBillion. Each Sunday for the next three weeks, we're running a post highlighting the top tweets that crossed our editors' computer screens during the preceding week. Our goal is to highlight emerging developments in our coverage areas, while also drawing attention to some compelling voices online.

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EventsEvents

November
01
2014

4th Global Islamic Microfinance Forum

Saturday, November 1, 2014

November
04
2014
November
04
2014

BSR Conference 2014

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

November
06
2014

Partner Contributors

Vikas Raj

Vikas Raj


Accion
Alex Counts

Alex Counts


Grameen Foundation
Debbie Dean

Debbie Dean


Grameen Foundation
Camilla Nestor

Camilla Nestor


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