Despite decades-long efforts by financial inclusion development practitioners, women continue to lag behind men in access to formal accounts. Sectors, such as health and education, have seen significant advances in women’s participation and corresponding behavior change by both men and women. Financial inclusion could do a lot more to learn from how other sectors have achieved this kind of progress. One important mechanism other sectors have used is deep understanding of how social norms impact attitudes and behaviors.
This Brief by CGAP introduces basic concepts of social norms change theory, reviews current practices regarding approaches to financial inclusion, and explores gendered lessons learned from other sectors that can be applied to financial inclusion.