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2020-07-02 - Colloque/Présentation - communication orale - Anglais - 24 page(s)

Siwale Juliana, Godfroid Cécile , "Digitizing microfinance: What will be the place of loan officers?" in 36th EGOS colloquium, online, 2020

  • Codes CREF : Economie des PVD (DI4375), Management (DI4360)
  • Unités de recherche UMONS : Economie et gestion de l'entreprise (W742)
  • Instituts UMONS : Institut de Recherche en Développement Humain et des Organisations (HumanOrg)
  • Centres UMONS : Microfinance (CERMI)

Abstract(s) :

(Anglais) The apparition of FinTech in the microfinance industry is considered to be a magical pathway to increase financial inclusion. This paper argues that beyond the numerous advantages digitisation is supposed to bring, it may also hinder financial inclusion if it leads to a dehumanisation of the loan officer-client relationship that has been a hallmark of microfinance. Based on questionnaires and on 21 semi-structured interviews with managers and loan officers of four microfinance institutions in Zambia, this paper examines how digitisation might affect the main activities loan officers perform in the loan lending life cycle. The research shows that, with digitisation, loan officers are anticipated more and more to be marketers which would threaten, or even disrupt, their intermediary role that has thrived on social relationships.