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Principal Investigator: Rohini Pande, Mohammed Kamal Professor of Public Policy, Harvard Kennedy School
Rohini will conduct a research study to evaluate a business training and negotiation program offered to clients of a large microfinance institution in Ahmedabad, Gujarat—the Self Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) Bank. SEWA specifically caters to helping the self-employed, low-income women in India. The purpose of the evaluation is to first determine whether information and skill constraints influence clients’ ability to benefit from credit and savings opportunities, and second, test if improving clients’ skill set can have a significant effect on financial management and behaviors. Current education programs focus on improving clients’ knowledge about the availability of different financial services and teaching them basic lessons in financial management such as budgeting, how to manage debt and savings, and entrepreneurial skill-building.