Category Archives: Indigenous & Traditional

The mechanization of donkey water, a symbol of economic progress

There’s a snippet of interesting insight in this news article from Hargeisa City in Somaliland. Traditional donkey carts supplying water are being replaced by motorcycles and this has been framed as a sign of increasing development and economic activity by … Continue reading

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A design challenge for agric service innovation in rural Africa

Find a way to embed principles of sustainable good agriculture for the smallscale farmer in a socio-economically beneficial way. How would we do this? Where do we begin? The answers to these questions and more will be forthcoming on this … Continue reading

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Part 4: The visual documentation of the original research on rural economic behaviour

I have uploaded a PDF synopsis of the fieldwork conducted during the original Prepaid Economy research including approach and methodology.  Also documented are the different ways those in the rural economy manage their ‘investments’. These images support the observations documented … Continue reading

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Part 2: The Observations made during original research on rural economic behaviour

One can roughly consider the relative income (or wealth) across three regions where observations were conducted on a continuum where the Indian village was the ‘wealthiest’ while the Malawians were living closest to the edge. However, on synthesizing the combined … Continue reading

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Part 1: Why are we publishing our original research on rural economic behaviour in 5 parts online?

A recent article in The Economist on the economic value of owning cattle in rural India made me to realize just how little is understood about the rural economy.  Here’s a snippet: That is because most people find spending easier … Continue reading

Posted in Alternative currency, Assumption filter, Banking, Bottom of the Pyramid, Buyer Behaviour, Cashless transactions, Cattle, Culture, Economy, Expenses, Flexibility, Income, India, Indigenous & Traditional, Livestock, Project report, Rural, Rural Economy, South Asia, Strategy, User research, Value | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on Part 1: Why are we publishing our original research on rural economic behaviour in 5 parts online?

The Role of Livestock Data in Rural Africa: The Tanzanian Case Study

The World Bank finally notices the humble goat, four of which will buy you a new Nokia featurephone in Malawi. Funded by Bill and Melinda, this report takes a closer look at the domesticated animal as a financial instrument and … Continue reading

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India recognizes the economic contribution of street vendors

What Indian economic phenomenon is at once marginal, even illegal, and enormously independent and entrepreneurial? That would be the street vendor, the small capitalist of the poor, and reservoir of off-the-books penalties that grease the machine of every municipal authority … Continue reading

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Reflecting on this blog’s genesis after 5 years

I started this blog in late December 2008, in earnest and every day during the first prototype fieldwork for The Prepaid Economy project, one of the iBoP Asia Project’s first batch of Small Grant winners from the ASEAN region. For … Continue reading

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Promoting Africa’s Informal Sector

Organising the informal sector and recognising its role as a profitable activity may contribute to economic development. This can also improve the capacity of informal workers to meet their basic needs by increasing their incomes and strengthening their legal status. … Continue reading

Posted in Africa, Airtime, Alternative currency, Assumption filter, Banking, Bottom of the Pyramid, Business Models, Buyer Behaviour, Cashless transactions, China, Economy, Flexibility, global, India, Indigenous & Traditional, Informal & Flexible, Kenya, Migrant worker, Mobile platform, Rural, Sub Saharan Africa, User research, Value | Tagged | Comments Off on Promoting Africa’s Informal Sector

Snippets of note

The fifth most important barrier to financial inclusion is individual level informality, a constraint cited by 15 percent of the unbanked population in Nigeria. Respondents who cite informality reasons for financial exclusion tend to be more educated and rurally based … Continue reading

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