the mif blog

Stories of inspiring entrepreneurs and organizations, discussion and commentary of new trends in private sector development, and the latest events and publications.

Seeking common ground on evaluating impact


“However beautiful the Strategy, you should occasionally look at the results." – Winston Churchill

Our MIF team – General Manager Nancy Lee, Claudia Gutierrez, Tetsuro Narita and me – recently spent two days with development experts and academics discussing and debating the importance of impact evaluation on Financial Inclusion programs. The retreat, co-sponsored by CGAP and DFID, was held in the shadow of Buckingham Palace at DFID’s offices, and included about 60 experts from development banks (ADB, CDC, DFID, MIF, EBRD, EIB, FMO, IFC...), foundations (Citi, Mastercard and Ford) and well-known scholars from IPA, Harvard and other institutions. The meeting was the brainchild of Alexia Latortue from CGAP, who saw a need to get a common understanding among funders and donors of the best evaluation methods, and also to spend time creating a “new impact narrative for Access to Finance.”

2012: A Year at the MIF

By Anonym

As the Multilateral Investment Fund prepares to celebrate its 20th anniversary in 2013, General Manager Nancy Lee reviews some of the MIF’s 2012 highlights, from ambitious new initiatives to informative events and publications.

El Fondo Multilateral de Inversiones se prepara para celebrar su 20 aniversario en 2013. En este contexto, Nancy Lee, Gerente General del FOMIN, discute lo más destacado de este año dentro de la organización y comparte en esta entrada de blog desde nuevas iniciativas hasta eventos y publicaciones de alto impacto que marcaron nuestro trabajo en el 2012.

El Impacto de las Microfinanzas en América Latina: ¿Qué dice la evidencia?

By Claudia Gutierrez

Varias revisiones de literatura sobre el impacto de las microfinanzas fueron publicadas en los últimos años (aquíaquí y aquí), pero ninguna enfocada únicamente en América Latina. Y vale la pena hacer la distinción, porque las características del sector y de los clientes de microfinanzas en la región son diferentes al resto del mundo. El sector de microfinanzas en nuestra región ha crecido de tal manera en algunos países (Bolivia y Perú) que es una parte muy importante del sistema financiero formal. Los clientes son en general pequeños microempresarios que no tenían acceso a servicios financieros pero que en su mayoría están por encima de la línea de pobreza. ¿Qué efectos tiene entonces las microfinanzas bajo este entorno?

Evidence-Gathering in Thailand


I recently traveled to Bangkok with two MIF colleagues to attend the second annual Impact and Policy Conference, sponsored by the Asian Development BankInnovations for Poverty Action (IPA), the Citi Foundation and the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL). The conference brought together over 200 researchers, policy makers, and international development specialists to go over the most recent impact findings on improving programs and policies for the poor. It was clear from the diverse list of participants, that donors and policy makers alike are actively seeking evidence with which to assess welfare outcomes on beneficiaries. There was consensus that financial outcomes are merely intermediary effects, and that what is ultimately sought are increases in things like consumption, health, asset building, housing investment, income smoothing, ability to withstand shocks, etc. Given these goals, research into what products and mechanisms lead to these outcomes is very important to ensure that resources go into programs that can deliver the desired impacts.