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Research Activities

Research Projects

FY 2007/2008 Research Topic: 1-12
Role of Small Scale Finance in Rural Development: Rural Finance and Microfinance

Outline

One of the main constraints on the economic activities of the poor, especially in rural areas, is credit constraints. Microfinance has been expected to mitigate these constraints and to contribute to rural economic development and poverty reduction.

On the other hand, local financial institutions have played important roles for the living and economic activities of the rural poor people as well. Furthermore, in recent years some microfinance institutions have started new schemes such as “microinsurance” in addition to lending programs.

Our research mission is to analyze the impact of such financial institutions on poverty reduction and rural economic development and to clarify these mechanisms in three Asian countries: India, Indonesia and Myanmar. For the research in India and Indonesia, we will design large-scale household surveys to precisely estimate the impact of microfinance schemes on the living standards of poor households and compare the performances of several treatments. We will also compare the mechanisms of such microfinance schemes and small local financial institutions, with the goal to propose better financial schemes for poverty reduction in rural areas.

Period

April 2007 - March 2009

Organizer

Members of the Research Project

HAMADA Miki
KONO Hisaki
ITO Seiro
OKAMOTO Ikuko
HIGASHIKATA Takayuki
TAKAHASHI Kazushi

Publications