Week of November 30, 2015

You may have noticed we did not publish The FAIV last Friday.  For the month of December, we are switching our delivery day to bring you midweek editions of The FAIV each Wednesday.  Let us know what you think of the new schedule! 

1. Savings Research: A new RCT looks at microsavings impact in Kenya among poor women. When provided with access to mobile savings accounts, those in the treatment group increased savings account balances and reduced transfers within their risk-sharing network. While the authors did not find negative welfare effects, the study raises questions on the relationship between formal financial access and informal financial systems. The World Bank

2. Mobile Money: A new report explores the growing popularity of the mobile money service Zaad and its implications on the state building process in Somaliland. IMTFI

3. Impact Evaluation: Chris Blattman worries about the direction of experimental social sciences, while David McKenzie is frustrated by a double standard for evaluating evidence. Although some might argue to abandon research altogether since we should apparently reject results that don't align with our personal experience.

4. Microfinance and Poverty: "When poverty is categorical...the transaction costs are higher for these organizations in terms of the outreach that they’re doing, and this makes it much more expensive to try and address poverty." Knowledge@Wharton 

5. Migration and Digital Finance: "The borderless world of money and business is, ironically, a world of ever-more-imposing borders for humans"...and is especially difficult to navigate for refugees or migrants struggling with language barriers and financial management issues in their destination country. BoingBoing

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