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What's Wrong with Microfinance?

by Thomas Dichter and Malcolm Harper Practical Action Publishing
Pub Date:
Pbk 288 pages
AU$67.00 NZ$69.57
Product Status: Out of stock. Not available to order.
Micro-finance has been a long-lived development fashion and in 2005 it enjoyed the accolade of a UN International Year. Many of the world's biggest multinational banks are now eagerly committing quite substantial sums to it, for business as well as public relations purposes. However, there are some important problems which risk being ignored or are fleetingly observed but then swept under the carpet in the current euphoria. The authors sound a timely and overdue warning to governments, bankers, donors and the general public and urges people to pause, reassess their expectations, re-think some policies and to recognise that microfinance is never a panacea and may sometimes be actively damaging to its intended customers. This important book will be of interest to students of microfinance, microfinance practitioners internationally, bankers, government ministries and NGO donor agencies, training institutions, and academics in finance, economics and sociology.

Introduction 1; Thomas Dichter; Part One: Clients; 1. Can microcredit make an already slippery slope more slippery? Some lessons from the social meaning of debt 9; Thomas Dichter; 2. Is microdebt good for poor people? A note on the dark side of; microfinance 19; David Hulme; 3. Imagining microfinance more boldly: Unleashing the true; potential of microfinance 23; Imran Matin, Munshi Sulaiman and M. A. Saleque; 4. What's wrong with groups? 35; Malcolm Harper; 5. Finance begins with savings, not loans 49; Hugh Allen; 6. 'Institutionalizing suspicion': The management and governance; challenge in user-owned microfinance groups 61; Susan Johnson and Namrata Sharma; 7. SHGs in India: Numbers yes, poverty outreach and empowerment, partially 73; Frances Sinha; 8. Microfinance and farmers: Do they fit? 83; Malcolm Harper; Part Two: Institutions; 9. The moneylender's dilemma 97; Kim Wilson; 10. Princes, peasants and pretenders: The past and future of African; microfinance 109; Paul Rippey; 11. Microfinance under crisis conditions: the case of Bolivia 121; Irina Aliaga and Paul Mosley; 12. Methodenstreit and sustainability in microfinance: Generalizations; describing institutional frameworks 137; J. D. Von Pischke; 13. Microfinance: Some conceptual and methodological problems 149; David Ellerman; 14. Learning from the Andhra Pradesh crisis 163; Prabhu Ghate; Part Three: Expectations; 15. The chicken and egg dilemma in microfinance: An historical; analysis of the sequence of growth and credit in the economic; development of the 'north' 179; Thomas Dichter; 16. A practitioner's view of the challenges facing NGO-based; microfinance in Bangladesh 193; S. M. Rahman; 17. De-industrialization and social disintegration in Bosnia 207; Milford Bateman; 18. Measuring the impact of microfinance 225; Richard L. Meyer; vi CONTENTS; CONTENTS vii; 19. From microcredit to livelihood finance 241; Vijay Mahajan; 20. Opportunity and evolution for microfinance 251; Mary Houghton and Ronald Grzywinski; Some final thoughts 257; Malcolm Harper; Index 261

Whats Wrong With Microfinance? unapologetically asks questions that others have been too polite, complacent,or uncritical to ask. You dont have to agree with everything here, or even most of it, to learn a great dealJonathan Morduch, Professor of Public Policy and Economics, New York University andco-author of The Economics of Microfinance A timely collection of expert treatises questioning the scope of and rationales for microfinance. Specifically aimedat giving a reality check at a time when hype around microfinances potential has never been greater...Dr Ben Rogaly, Senior Lecturer in Human Geography, University of Sussex, UK During a stampede its useful for someone to ride apart from the herd and speculate about where the multitudeis going. This book does that for the widely promoted and highly praised microfinance industry...Dr Dale W. Adams, Professor Emeritus, The Ohio State University This book by microfinance insiders will be invaluable to the enthusiasts as well as the critics not only to reflect on its truepotential but to also temper the unrealistic expectations that have been triggered by the UN year and the Nobel prize.Sukhwinder Arora, Microfinance Professional
Thomas Dichter has spent half of his 40-year career in international development working in microfinance on three continents. From 1994 to 1998 he was senior consultant to the World Banks Sustainable Banking With the Poor project. He is the author of Despite Good Intentions: Why Development Assistance to the Third World has Failed. Malcolm Harper was Professor of Enterprise Development at Cranfield School of Management, UK, until 1995, and since then has worked mainly in India. He was Chairman of Basix Finance (19962006), and is Chairman of M-CRIL, the microfinance credit rating agency.