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Mobile Telephony, Financial Inclusion, and Inclusive Growth

The paper employs the multipurpose nature of mobile telephony to investigate its welfare implications using a large sample of households in Ghana. We use seemingly unrelated probit and instrumental variable procedure to test for two related issues: First, we investigate whether mobile telephony promotes pro-poor development by helping households to efficiently allocate consumption and navigate out of poverty. Second, we analyze whether access to a broad array of financial services enhances the capacity of households to live worthwhile lives. The results show that mobile penetration and financial inclusion significantly reduce the probability of a household becoming poor and increase per capita household consumption of food and nonfood items. Our results show that the welfare benefits of mobile telephony and financial inclusion are not more pronounced in female-headed households. These insights serve as useful guide for government and other stakeholders who are looking for avenues to improve livelihoods. Download the paper here.

Sarah Corley
Sarah is Deputy Director at DFI and is responsible for developing the DFS profession and providing opportunities for capacity building outside of our online course provision. She has over 20 years of experience within the learning and capacity development within the development and health sector, and is passionate about being a catalyst for change.

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