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You Cannot Save Alone - Financial and Social Mobilization in Savings and Credit Groups

Roy Mersland

University of Agder

Øyvind Eggen

NUPI - Norwegian Institute for InternationalAffairs

October 29, 2007

Savings and credit groups are becoming increasingly popular, both as a cost-efficient alternative to mainstream microfinance and as a mean to mobilize people around individual and common challenges. Whether donors should promote and support Self Help Microfinance Groups that confine themselves to financial intermediation only - the specialist, or minimalist approach - or if they should support those pursuing a more integrated approach and incorporate a broader set of activities, is increasingly being debated. The study proposes a framework to better analyze and understand the different group-models, their advantages and disadvantages. Furthermore, the study outlines how social and financial mobilisation in savings and credit groups are interlinked and reinforce each other. The claim is that social mobilisation in the form of change in attitude and knowledge at the individual level is needed to make financial operations effective. At the same time financial mobilisation is needed to enable social mobilisation; with the practice of financial mobilisation people can become socially mobilised.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 74

Keywords: microfinance, social mobilization, savings and credit groups, self help groups

JEL Classification: O10, P46, R51, Z00

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Date posted: November 27, 2007 ; Last revised: February 10, 2008

Suggested Citation

Mersland, Roy and Eggen, Øyvind, You Cannot Save Alone - Financial and Social Mobilization in Savings and Credit Groups (October 29, 2007). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1032247 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1032247

Contact Information

Roy Mersland (Contact Author)
University of Agder ( email )
Serviceboks 422
N-4604 Kristiansand, VEST AGDER 4604
HOME PAGE: http://www.uia.no/microfinance
Øyvind Eggen
NUPI - Norwegian Institute for InternationalAffairs ( email )
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