Replication Programme on Financial Services for the Poor

Over the last four decades, financial services for the poor have become a priority in L&MICs. This has led to the development of multiple financial instruments, including microlending, microsavings, microinsurance, alternative collateralisation, prize-linked savings accounts, and others with different sets of risk profiles and targeted at poor populations. Although financial services for the poor have seen significant uptake, questions remain regarding whether impacts vary based on population targeted, product design and delivery, risk management practices of the service provider, country of operation, associated skills transfer, and other aspects of the programme design.

CDC South Africa

3ie is funding seven replications to improve the evidence base on financial services for the poor. 3ie does this through the funding of internal replications of influential or innovative impact evaluations of financial interventions designed for low-income populations in low- and middle-income countries. Internal replication is the reconciliation and re-analysis of the findings of an original study using the study’s own raw data. 

Replication researchers selected a study included in the candidate studies list. This list includes impact evaluations of mobile money, cash transfers, bank deposits, and other financial service interventions targeted towards underserved and unbanked populations in developing countries.

To read more about our Replication Programme, please click here. To see the current status of these studies, as well as other replication studies, please visit the replication studies page.

The financial services for the poor replications are funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Replication Researcher: Nazila Alinaghi
Original Paper Title: Risk sharing and transactions costs: evidence from Kenya’s mobile money revolution
Original Researchers: William Jack and Tavneet Suri
Original Publication: American Economic Review
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Replication Researcher: Akinwande Atanda
Original Paper Title: Building state capacity: evidence from biometric smartcards in India
Original Researchers: Karthik Muralidharan, Paul Niehaus and Sandip Sukhantankar
Original Publication: American Economic Review
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Replication Researchers: Edmundo Beteta, Giovanna Aguilar, Oliver Elorreaga, Jean Pierre Meneses, Edgar Ventura and César Huaroto
Original Paper Title: Payment mechanisms and anti-poverty programs: evidence from a mobile money cash transfer experiment in Niger
Original Researchers: Jenny Aker and colleagues
Original Publication: Economic Development and Cultural Change
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Replication Researcher: Stefan Lhachimi
Original Paper Title: Cash, food, or vouchers? Evidence from a randomized experiment in northern Ecuador
Original Researchers: Melissa Hidrobo and colleagues
Original Publication: Journal of Development Economics
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Replication Researcher: Maira Reimao
Original Paper Title: Cash or condition? Evidence from a cash transfer experiment
Original Researchers: Sarah Baird, Craig McIntosh and Berk Ozler
Original Publication: The Quarterly Journal of Economics
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Replication Researcher: Jesper Stage
Original Paper Title: Facilitating savings for agriculture: field experimental evidence from Malawi
Original Researchers: Lasse Brune and colleagues
Original Publication: Economic Development and Cultural Change
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Replication Researcher: Hongmei Wang
Original Paper Title: The short-term impact of unconditional cash transfers to the poor: experimental evidence from Kenya
Original Researchers: Johannes Haushofer and Jeremy Shapiro
Original Publication: The Quarterly Journal of Economics
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