In this research, we assess whether and how government-to-person (G2P_ payments increase formal financial inclusion. This work couples observations, interviews, and focus groups in Colombia and Pakistan with extensive analysis of reports on G2P payments covering 19 countries and quantitative data from the World Bank Global Findex.

While our research identifies five key mechanisms by which G2P payments could lead to greater financial inclusion, the evidence ultimately suggests that G2P beneficiaries do not take advantage of the basic and common functionality of these programs.

We provide insightful recommendations for governments and the private sector to design better products, optimize delivery of payments, and effectively communicate the advantages of these programs to beneficiaries.

Guy Stuart

Executive Director, Microfinance Opportunities

Guy is Executive Director of Microfinance Opportunities (MFO). He has extensive experience conducting research on the financial capabilities of low-income consumers. His research has been published in books, peer reviewed journals, working papers, and blogs. Before becoming Executive Director at MFO, Guy received his PhD from the University of Chicago in 1994, and subsequently worked in Chicago in the field of community economic development. He then served 13 years as a lecturer in public policy at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, teaching courses in management and microfinance. Additionally, he was a Senior Advisor to MFO and served as Principal Investigator on five Financial Diaries studies and as project leader for the development of the Financial Capabilities Index Web Portal. He continues to teach in executive education programs at HKS, and is a fellow at the Ash Center.

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