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  • Blog post

    Pre-paid electricity metering and its effects on the poor

    Pre-paid meters for electricity or water are spreading rapidly in the developing world. Households that switched from post-paid monthly bills to pre-paid meters in South Africa, reduced their electricity usage drastically. Given that the energy demand of households is typically relatively unresponsive to prices, the question arises as to where these reductions came from....

    11 Sep 2019 | Kelsey Jack, Kathryn McDermott, Anja Sautmann

  • Blog post

    Flexible payment plans for improved access to off-grid energy in Pakistan

    There are approximately 144 million individuals in Pakistan who reside in either completely off-grid areas – areas that are too far away to connect to the grid - or in ‘bad’-grid areas where load shedding exceeds 12 hours per day (IFC, 2015). Households and businesses in off-grid and bad-grid areas spend an average of 14% of their monthly disposable income on kerosene...

    9 Sep 2019 | Jacopo Bonan, Giovanna D'Adda, Mahreen Mahmud, Farah Said

  • Blog post

    Insights to inform urban planning in Rwanda

    The economic geography of Rwanda is characterised by relatively low levels of urbanisation (estimated at about 19% in 2016-2017), a high urbanisation growth rate, high population density and the urban dominance of Kigali City, the capital. Rwanda has urbanised rapidly over the past decade and will continue to experience further urban growth in the near future. Urbanisation...

    27 Aug 2019 | Anirudh Rajashekar, Marion Richard, Dimitri Stoelinga

  • Blog post

    Mitigating welfare losses for workers after a layoff: Evidence from Brazil

    Across the development path, social insurance programs become an increasingly important part of governments’ role, and the SDGs have highlighted the importance of such social protection schemes for development. Informality and low state capacity, however, impose challenges for policy design that may have consequences for the insurance value of such programs, and there is...

    22 Aug 2019 | Francois Gerard, Joana Naritomi

  • Blog post

    Escaping the fragility trap: Lessons from Myanmar

    State fragility imperils people’s lives and prevents long-run economic prosperity. In July 2019, the IGC co-hosted a large academic conference in Yangon, Myanmar on this critical issue. Several important lessons emerged for states struggling with fragility. State fragility, the situation where government institutions have weak capacity or low legitimacy, affects many of...

    19 Aug 2019 | Matei Alexianu

  • Blog post

    A framework for affordable housing in Pakistan

    Pakistan’s population explosion and rapid urbanisation has left a growing number of people without access to decent, stable, affordable housing. The last census, in 2017, documents a housing stock of 32.2 million, of which 39% is urban. The urban population is expected to grow by 2.3 million people per year over the next 20 years. This translates into the demand for...

    13 Aug 2019 | Kamil Khan Mumtaz, Hina Shaikh

  • Blog post

    Keep it clean: Can blockchain change the nature of land registry in developing countries?

    The global economy is constantly exposed to disruptive technologies. Take the example of telecommunications: it was not long ago that everything revolved around landlines. Households would go to huge lengths to ensure they were well-serviced with fixed-line infrastructure, while those left out endured long travel times for everyday activities like managing a business or...

    5 Aug 2019 | Sebastian Kriticos

  • Blog post

    Ugandan fine coffee (Arabica): What is the opportunity?

    Ugandan Arabica coffee is all but unknown among end consumers and underrated by traders. There are immediate opportunities to improve marketing methods as well as to raise farmers’ incomes by building a supply chain that emphasises quality, such as the presence of washing stations in the western regions. When coffee production and revenues began to rise in Uganda in the...

    5 Aug 2019 | Ameet Morjaria, Martin Sprott

  • Blog post

    Can the microcredit model be improved?

    The long-term impact of microcredit on peoples’ lives is limited: new research reveals it can help more people by modifying and extending its model. Microcredit is frequently touted as an effective policy tool to fight global poverty. Its global profile was elevated in 2006 when Muhammad Yunus and the Grameen Bank won the Nobel Peace Prize for pioneering microcredit....

    30 Jul 2019 | Vikas Dimble, Ahmed Mushfiq Mobarak

  • Blog post

    What will aid and development look like under UK Prime Minister Johnson?

    As the Conservative Party leadership contest draws to a close, Britain has finally seen a new Prime Minister enter the famous black door of 10 Downing Street. It’s a surprise to few that Boris Johnson has won the race to succeed Theresa May, opening a new chapter in the nation’s Brexit saga. What lies ahead for the development sector? In the 2016 referendum, Johnson...

    25 Jul 2019 | Jamie Green