Flipping the Script: Why Small and Growing Businesses Should Lead the Researchers – Not the Other Way Around
All too often, global development research hinges on the interest of researchers, rather than the knowledge needs of small and growing businesses and their impacted communities. This can leave entrepreneurs with plenty of reports, but no practical tools for continuing to collect and use data themselves. Analysts at the William Davidson Institute, Gente Del Futuro, Practical Action and ANDE propose a better approach: letting small businesses lead the way.
How are young people in Africa saving and spending money during COVID-19, when many of their previous sources of income have disappeared? Mahlet Alemayehu at L-IFT shares the results of a study in which 117 young people living in Nigeria kept a record of their savings and spending over several months. The data can help financial service providers anticipate how young people will need to use their accounts, and determine what other services they may need as they navigate the challenges of the pandemic.
Can Africa Really ‘Build Back Better’? How Financial Inclusion Must Evolve To Enable a COVID-19 Recovery
Sub-Saharan Africa has long been one of the financial inclusion sector’s top success stories. But according to David Ferrand, the former director of FSD Kenya, the overall impact of that newfound financial access has been disappointing. In this Q&A, he discusses the current challenges and future outlook of sub-Saharan Africa’s financial sector – and how financial inclusion players can help the region emerge stronger after COVID-19 subsides.
Optimizing Incremental Building: Why the Answer To Decent, Affordable Housing for All Is Hidden in Plain Sight
The scale of the global housing challenge is enormous, with an estimated 1.6 billion people worldwide lacking adequate shelter. As a huge percentage of homebuilders around the world build incrementally, analysts at Habitat for Humanity’s Terwilliger Center for Innovation in Shelter explore how optimizing the incremental building process could present an effective solution.
Beyond the ‘Public vs. Private’ Debate in Global Education: Helping the Schools That Serve the World’s Neediest Children Survive COVID-19
COVID-19 is preventing low-fee private schools from serving the estimated 258 million children who lack access to education. And according to Irene D. Pritzker at IDP Foundation, these “mom and pop” schools lack access to the resources that could help them survive the pandemic. She urges the development sector to support them – and in the process, to move past outdated debates about public versus private schools in emerging countries.
In East Africa, the COVID-19 crisis is causing far-reaching consequences for small and medium-sized enterprises. And according to analysts at Intellecap and Viktoria Ventures, much of the burden of ensuring these businesses' short-term survival lies with angel investors. They share some practical considerations that can help these investors navigate the many challenges of the pandemic.
What Corporations and Smallholder Farmers Have in Common: Addressing the Challenge of Land Rights in Emerging Markets
Lucia Maurício farms about 25 acres of land in Mozambique to feed her family. Portucel manages over 32,000 acres of eucalyptus farms nearby, to power its global supply chain. As Mary Hobbs at USAID points out, both require clear and documented land rights to achieve their goals. She explains why land rights are an essential part of reducing poverty among farmers and boosting investment for corporations in sub-Saharan Africa.
Necessity Is the Mother of Disruption: How Indonesia’s Fintech Startups Can Survive the Do-Or-Die Situation of COVID-19
Indonesia is a silent giant in the startup ecosystem, with over 2,200 startups nationwide – many in the fintech sector. However, with the onset of COVID-19, this progress is at risk of dissipating. Anshul Saxena and Sheila Teta Carina at MicroSave Consulting recommend several measures that can help sustain fintech startups' momentum during the pandemic.