Articles by Natasha Beale
Demand for digital credit is growing in emerging markets, sparking opportunities for providers – and critical questions about its impact on low-income borrowers. CEGA's Digital Credit Observatory awarded five short-term pilot grants to studies in Haiti, the Dominican Republic, India and China, which provided some intriguing answers. Alexandra Wall, Natasha Beale and Carson Christiano of CEGA explore some of the studies' takeaways.
- banking, Base of the Pyramid, credit, digital finance, digital payments, entrepreneurship, financial inclusion, financial innovation, financial services, fintech, healthcare technology, lending, microcredit, microfinance, mobile banking, mobile finance, mobile money, mobile phones, poverty alleviation, Women
Microfinance has been hailed as a transformative force for poor households and entrepreneurs in emerging markets. But recent evidence suggests it is not the silver bullet it was once thought to be. Meanwhile, mobile phones have become ubiquitous in most developing countries, and Alexandra Wall, Natasha Beale and Carson Christiano explore whether digital credit can do a better job than microcredit in meeting the needs of the underserved.
Scaling technologies that promote economic development is challenging. That's why UC Berkeley established the Development Impact Lab. Natasha Beale, the lab's manager, discusses the concept of "development engineering" and gives examples to illustrate that large-scale impact is indeed possible with the right mix of targeted funding, technological innovation and rigorous field work.