Call for Expressions of Interest are invited by the Microsavings and Payments Innovation Initiative (MPII) to conduct thorough, field-based research on savings products and services, as well as payments and money transfer channels for the world’s poor and financially excluded. EOI submissions for Round 2 are due Friday, May 4, 2012 by 11:59 pm, Eastern Daylight Time.
The Microsavings and Payments Innovation Initiative (MPII) invites Expressions of Interest (EOI) applications. Besides, financial inclusion being a top policy priority across developing countries, relatively little is known about the specific factors which enable people to save as well as transfer money in an effective manner. Recent years have seen a growth in technological innovations enabling novel products including mobile money and new channels as agent banking. Yet, the impact of such innovations on poverty alleviation is still unknown. The Microsavings and Payments Innovation Initiative will fill this gap by building evidence on (1) innovations that most effectively enable improved usage of savings and payments services by the poor (through reduced cost, reduced risk, improved learning, behavioral incentives, regulatory reform and others.
The Microsavings and Payments Innovation Initiative (MPII) awarded 5 grants in the first round of its competitive research fund. Total funding awarded amounted to $445,000, which will support three randomized evaluations and two diagnostic research projects. Successful applications passed through two stages of evaluation and selection. The first was an Expression of Interest application, for which MPII received 119 applications and invited 27 to submit full proposals. The 22 full proposals submitted were then vetted and evaluated by the MPII Executive Committee.
A total of $826,500 will be awarded in at least two subsequent competitive funding rounds. Applicants must either hold a PhD or be a current PhD candidate in a relevant social science or engineering discipline, as economics, statistics, sociology, anthropology, public health, education, computer science and others as well. They must demonstrate experience in field research. All qualified researchers affiliated with universities, think tanks and other research institutions throughout the world are invited to apply. Research projects focused on Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia are encouraged as are applications from researchers based in those regions or from teams with one or more researchers in those regions.
Deadline: May 4 2012 (11:59 pm Eastern Daylight Time)
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