Foreign Aid, Its Defense and Reform

University Press of Kentucky
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Publisher
University Press of Kentucky
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Published on
Dec 31, 1987
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Pages
264
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ISBN
9780813133010
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Language
English
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Genres
Political Science / International Relations / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM free.
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Sara Horrell
Accumulation of assets to enable the diversification of activities has been established as crucial in helping the rural poor escape poverty. The empowerment of women has been identified as a way to overcome inefficiencies in the allocation of resources within the family and so improve agrarian households’ productivity. However, achieving diversification is not necessarily empowering for women and some initiatives may worsen their position.

This book uses the information collected in original household surveys conducted in rural areas in four countries to investigate the links between women’s position in the household, diversification strategies, labour market participation and poverty reduction. The book centres on country-specific chapters that provide an in-depth focus on an issue of relevance to the location and that tease out the interplay between female empowerment and development in that context. In particular, the chapters examine:

Landlessness in Ethiopia

Feminization of the agricultural labour market in Andhra Pradesh, India

Female labour supply and women’s power within the household in Uganda

Disadvantages faced by female-headed households in Zimbabwe

The analysis calls for caution in assuming that labour market expansion necessarily acts to empower women and emphasizes the role female access to assets can have in facilitating diversification and escaping poverty. It will appeal to all those studying development economics, with particular interest in areas such as diversification, poverty and female empowerment.

Paul Mosley
The persistence of poverty hurts us all, and attacking poverty is a major policy objective everywhere. In Britain, the main political parties have an anti-poverty mandate and in particular an agreed commitment to eliminate child poverty by 2020, but there is controversy over how this should be done. This book addresses one of the main causes of poverty, financial exclusion – the inability to access finance from the high-street banks. People on low or irregular incomes typically have to resort to loan sharks, ‘doorstep lenders’ and other informal credit sources, a predicament which makes escape from the poverty trap doubly difficult.

Over the last fifteen years, a strategy of breaking down the poverty trap has been implemented, known in the UK as community development financial institutions (CDFIs), typically non-profit lending institutions focussed on the financially excluded, and seeking to learn from the achievements of microfinance around the world. Focussing on the period 2007-09, during which the UK went into a global recession, this book investigates how CDFIs work and how well they have helped low-income people and businesses to weather that recession. Based on a study of eight CDFIs in four UK cities, we ask: what ideas for overcoming financial exclusion have worked well, and which have worked badly? What can we learn from the experience of these CDFIs which can help reduce poverty in this country and globally?

We assess the impact of CDFIs using a range of indicators (including income, assets, education, health) and ask what changes in policy by both CDFIs and government agencies (for example, benefits agencies) might be able to increase impact. Some of the key lessons are: CDFIs need to work with appropriate partners to build up savings capacity in their clients; the community environment is vital in determining who escapes from the poverty trap; and CDFIs can never function properly unless they learn how to control their overdue debts.

This book will be vital reading for those concerned with social policy, microfinance and anti-poverty policies in industrialised countries and around the world.

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