Blogs

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Blogs
December 2015

SMEs are good business for Kenya’s growing banking sector

Photo: Maasai women make, sell and display their bead work in Kajiado, Kenya. 2010. Photo: © Georgina Goodwin/World Bank. This blog post originally appeared on the World Bank Private Sector Development blog.   Kenya’s financial sector has expanded rapidly over the last decade and lending to businesses—including small and medium size-enterprises has played a big […]

Blogs
November 2015

How big is our bias? What the Kenya Financial Diaries tells us about what we might be missing in FinAccess

Ever find yourself scrolling through the latest round of FinAccess or FinScope and think to yourself, “But they only visited these respondents once. Did they really get the full picture?” Me too. The Kenya Financial Diaries gives us some idea of the size of the underreporting bias that a onetime access survey might face, at […]

Blogs
November 2015

Fulfilling the promise

The inaugural annual lecture on financial inclusion was held at the historic Nairobi National Museum on Tuesday 17th November. It was a storming success. The lecture delivered by Dr Tavneet Suri examined the mobile money revolution in Kenya, and asked, can the promise of financial inclusion for all Kenyans be fulfilled? Mobile money has already […]

Blogs
November 2015

The end of magic and the beginning of wisdom (or why a Nobel Laureate hates randomized control trials and likes financial diaries)

As a university economics student, I was obsessed with two topics: development and econometrics. The former, because the field enabled me to explore questions about the patterns of wealth and poverty that I saw in Chile and Mexico growing up and struggled to find answers to. The latter, because the fancy statistical models that were […]

Blogs
October 2015

The nexus between financial inclusion and geospatial data

FSD Kenya recently concluded a geospatial mapping of all financial access points in Kenya, including bank branches, Automated Teller Machines (ATMs), Deposit Taking Microfinance Institutions (DTMs), bank agents, mobile money agents and more.. The results show remarkable growth over two years, the details of which will be released on Thursday 29th October. Geospatial mapping, whose […]

Blogs
September 2015

Take a look at our new website!

Today is an exciting day for FSD Kenya – we launch our new website. It is designed to be a comprehensive online resource for anyone looking for information on financial sector development and financial inclusion in Kenya. Working with the fantastic Nairobi-based digital agency, Circle, we have developed an online platform that will showcase not just […]

Blogs
September 2015

The importance of social networks in Kenya

After ten years of research in Kenya, we at FSD are beginning to have a relatively detailed understanding of how financial behaviour, needs, interpersonal relationships, and financial products interact. From the start, we focused our research on the poorer, less-well served groups in society. These are the most vulnerable, who not only stand to benefit […]

Blogs
September 2015

Why fintech developers should pay attention to the opening of M-PESA’s API

Following years of speculation, complete with a full scale M-PESA system upgrade dubbed G2 (for M-PESA 2nd generation platform), and relocation of the servers from Germany to Kenya, Safaricom finally opened the M-PESA API (application program interface) to the public early this month. Essentially, what this means is that a developer can seamlessly plug a given application […]