TechInPacific – An indicator of effective digital services can be valued from its financial inclusion performance.
United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) developed a tool, named Impact Pathways, that behaves as both an evaluator of financial inclusion and an SDG benchmark.
The tool uses three stages of approach to measuring the level of investment and its contribution to the digital economy and SDG development:
- Transaction Data. The focus on customers’ activity and how they use the product.
- Mobile phone survey. Finding the benefits customers find from the service.
- Impact picture. Supporting research that correlates the benefits to SDG objectives.
It started as an initiative of the Pacific Financial Inclusion Program (PFIP) to help the low-income Pacific Islanders with financial access to formal services and education.
Since 2008, PFIP has co-partnered with UNCDP and UNDP and funded by the Australian Government, European Union, and the New Zealand Government to operate in the following countries: Fiji, PNG, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Timor Islands, Timor-Leste, Tonga, and Vanuatu. Global consulting firm BFA supports its programs with low-income financial service consultancy.
One of the case studies by Vodafone can be read here, which illustrates the experience two businesswomen from the rural communities initiatives can reach SDG goals as observed and measured from the tool.
Both development practitioners and financial institutions can utilize the tool for different purposes. Practitioners can generate insights from tools for program learning. For institutions, it can be a medium to learn customers’ behavior, preference, and received benefits.