Shujaaz Inc. is a Kenyan communications research and production company. Formerly called Well Told Story, the company is the producer of “Shujaaz,” an award-winning media platform that provides open spaces – including online platforms – for youth to discuss personal and societal issues often considered sensitive or taboo within their communities.
We were huddled in a routine team discussion at FSD Kenya when we received news of the first confirmed Covid-19 case in Kenya. Like many others, we wondered what this might mean for our work, our families and our country in the days ahead.
The inability of low-income households to access quality healthcare is a major challenge in dealing with unanticipated shocks. The challenge is bigger for rural households. Small rural pharmacies stock almost entirely generic medicines because these are the products that patients can afford.
Since the launch of M-Shwari in 2012, the number of digital lenders and loans disbursed has grown substantially. Advances in credit scoring, few regulatory barriers and the widespread use of mobile phones and mobile money have enabled growth of the digital lending industry, giving borrowers a quick and convenient option for credit.
Digital credit has been instrumental in granting formal credit in ways that were not conceivable a decade ago. It has provided individuals with the tools to manage their day-to-day needs and working capital for small enterprises.
On the 5th of September 2019, the Financial Sector Deepening (FSD) Kenya and the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP), held a stakeholder validation workshop in Nairobi, where they presented the findings of a research study that identified seven key financially underserved segments of the Kenyan population and discussed the potentially viable business cases and policy implications that financial market players could tap into.
Manufacturers of cars or microwave machines are duty bound to ensure that their products are safe for use. Why can’t financial regulation introduce a similar obligation to ensure financial products and services are not negligently developed and sold, causing harm to consumers?
FSD Kenya set out to explore ways of using finance to build livelihoods of poor households in Kitui. The survey identified indigenous poultry and pulses as the agriculture value chains with the greatest opportunity for low-income households.
In the past five years, digital loans have transformed the market for credit in Kenya. For millions of adults, the possibility of borrowing from their phones has opened the door to private, formal consumer credit for the first time.
Joseph and Alice are not real people, but the impact of behavioral research on consumer protection is anything but hypothetical. Across the world, consumer protection authorities have been using behavioral research to inform everything from post-financial crisis rules for mortgage brokers to regulations on new mobile and app-based financial services.