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Grameen Foundation
INSIGHTS E-Newsletter

What’s Next for eAgriculture?

By Juan Forero, Mobile Financial Services & Commercial Manager, Grameen Foundation

Though mobile phones and other technologies hold great promise for improving lives in poor, rural communities, there is still debate about how they can best be used to improve agricultural and rural development. Last November, Grameen Foundation and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) hosted an e-forum to discuss some of the central successes and challenges of emerging and established technologies. The result was a timely dialogue that will inform discussions at the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS+10) Summit, to be held in Egypt this year.

Throughout the wide-ranging exchange, several key topics came to the fore that deserve closer scrutiny in 2014: the influence of measurement, the impact of gender, and the role of public-private partnerships.

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Book Review:

Contemplating Scarcity and Its Implications for Microfinance and Poverty Alleviation

By Alex Counts, CEO, Grameen Foundation

The field of behavioral economics – the intersection of psychology and economics – is fairly new. This is a partial explanation of why its lessons have not yet been applied much to microfinance and anti-poverty programs generally. But this is clearly changing, and none-too-soon, as microfinance in particular is in need of reinvention and rebranding.

An excellent new book titled Scarcity: Why Having Too Little Means So Much, by Sendhil Mullainathan and Eldar Shafir (Times Books, 2013), will make this process of leveraging the insights of behavioral economics into microfinance much easier. Drawing on decades of research, it focuses on an analysis of the phenomenon of scarcity – having too little of anything important to the human experience – and the implications of that analysis for policy and practice.

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More Resources

Check out the publications page on our website to find all of our white papers and other resources.

Grameen Foundation
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Washington, DC 20005


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