Publication Date

7-1-1999

Summary

Wide agreement about the goal of microfinance—to improve the welfare of the poor—has not led to wide agreement about how best to achieve that goal. To aid discussion, I propose a framework for outreach—the social benefits of microfinance—in terms of six aspects: worth, cost, depth, breadth, length, and scope. The framework encompasses both the poverty approach to microfinance and the self-sustainability approach. The poverty approach assumes that great depth of outreach can compensate for narrow breadth, short length, and limited scope. The self-sustainability approach assumes that wide breadth, long length, and ample scope can compensate for shallow depth. I show how to use the framework for BancoSol of Bolivia.

Document Type

Working Paper

Category

Financial Inclusion

Subarea

Asset Building

Original Citation

Schreiner, M. (1999). Aspects of outreach: A framework for the discussion of the social benefits of microfinance (CSD Working Paper No. 99-3). St. Louis, MO: Washington University, Center for Social Development.

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.7936/K79W0F0C

Project

Microfinance

Keywords

microfinance, social development, theory

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