Blogs

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Blogs
March 2017

It takes a village: Lessons from digitizing social school fees payments

Our work on the Kenya Financial Diaries made it painfully clear to us that school fees are incredibly expensive for low income families.  The lowest end public schools often ask about KSh 20,000 per year for a single student, when rural household incomes often average around KSh 6,000 per month.  Many families are able to […]

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Blogs
January 2017

Studying shocks to identify opportunities for financial service providers

 “Maisha ni kung’ang’ana tu” (life is a struggle) Diversification of risk, not putting your eggs in one basket, hustling – whichever word or phrase you use, Robert, a boda boda (motorcycle taxi) rider, embodies this spirit. How do people deal with shocks in their lives? How do they survive when their income is not enough […]

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Blogs
January 2017

The unusual dynamics of school fee payment (or non-payment) in a Kenyan school

As we trudged through Kivani Secondary School’s third term student attendance records, one absenteeism after another greeted us. Per our analysis in preparation for Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) with selected parents and guardians at the school, the average student missed about 13% of class time. I didn’t give it much thought then. But on this Wednesday […]

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Blogs
November 2016

The use of borrowed airtime with interest in Kenya

Background The telecom sector in Kenya has experienced phenomenal growth over the past decade. Mobile phone penetration has topped 90%[1], with 78% of Kenyan adults now owning a working mobile phone[2]. With service providers fronting various value-added services, the outlook is positive. Further, promotions offered by mobile operators help consumers to continue to enjoy their […]