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A Model of Mission Drift in Microfinance Institutions

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  • Suman Ghosh

    ()
    (Department of Economics, College of Business, Florida Atlantic University)

  • Eric Van Tassel

    ()
    (Department of Economics, College of Business, Florida Atlantic University)

Abstract

In this paper we offer a theoretical examination of the phenomenon known as mission drift. In recent years there have been claims that the entry of large donors with deep pockets have led to a mission drift phenomenon, whereby microfinance institutions who were previously catering to the poorest agents have drifted towards catering to the less poor. We offer an explanation for how the change in the lending portfolio of a poverty minimizing microfinance institution might be linked to the phenomenon of increasing commercialization through the advent of these large profit oriented donors. The degree to which lending portfolios change turns out to be a function of both the supply of donor funds and the strategic interaction between heterogeneous microfinance institutions.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, College of Business, Florida Atlantic University in its series Working Papers with number 08003.

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Length: 23 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:fal:wpaper:08003

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Keywords: microfinance; mission drift; poverty;

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References

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  1. Sajeda Amin & Ashok S. Rai & Giorgio Topa, 1999. "Does Microcredit Reach the Poor and Vulnerable? Evidence from Northern Bangladesh," CID Working Papers 28, Center for International Development at Harvard University.
  2. Robert Cull & Asli Demirguç-Kunt & Jonathan Morduch, 2007. "Financial performance and outreach: a global analysis of leading microbanks," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(517), pages F107-F133, 02.
  3. P. Mosley, 2001. "Microfinance and Poverty in Bolivia," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(4), pages 101-132.
  4. Coleman, Brett E., 1999. "The impact of group lending in Northeast Thailand," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 105-141, October.
  5. Morduch, J., 1998. "The Microfinance Schism," Papers 626, Harvard - Institute for International Development.
  6. Shahidur R. Khandker, 2005. "Microfinance and Poverty: Evidence Using Panel Data from Bangladesh," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 19(2), pages 263-286.
  7. J. Copestake & P. Dawson & J.-P. Fanning & A. McKay & K. Wright-Revolledo, 2005. "Monitoring the Diversity of the Poverty Outreach and Impact of Microfinance: A Comparison of Methods Using Data from Peru," Development Policy Review, Overseas Development Institute, vol. 23(6), pages 703-723, November.
  8. Beatriz Armendariz & Jonathan Morduch, 2007. "The Economics of Microfinance," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262512017, December.
  9. Maskin, Eric & Tirole, Jean, 1987. "A theory of dynamic oligopoly, III : Cournot competition," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 947-968, June.
  10. J. Tirole & E. Maskin, 1982. "A Theory of Dynamic Oligopoly, I: Overview and Quantity Competition with Large-Fixed Costs," Working papers 320, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  11. Riley, John G, 1979. "Informational Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 331-59, March.
  12. McIntosh, Craig & Wydick, Bruce, 2005. "Competition and microfinance," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(2), pages 271-298, December.
  13. Foster, James & Greer, Joel & Thorbecke, Erik, 1984. "A Class of Decomposable Poverty Measures," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(3), pages 761-66, May.
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Cited by:
  1. Dlamini, Menzie S., 2012. "The effect of subsidies on the performance and sustainability of microfinance institutions in sub-Saharan Africa," Research Theses 134487, Collaborative Masters Program in Agricultural and Applied Economics.
  2. Isabelle Agier & Ariane Szafarz, 2011. "Subjectivity in Credit Allocation to Micro-Entrepreneurs: Evidence from Brazil," Working Papers CEB 11-016, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  3. Carlos Serrano-Cinca & Begoña Gutiérrez-Nieto, 2012. "Microfinance, the long tail and mission drift," Working Papers CEB 12-001, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  4. Marie Briere & Ariane Szafarz, 2011. "Investment in Microfinance Equity: Risk, Return, and Diversification Benefits," Working Papers CEB 11-050, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  5. Mishra, Ajit & Sarangi, Sudipta, 2010. "Provider Incentives and Delivery of Developmental Goods," Department of Economics Working Papers 22126, University of Bath, Department of Economics.
  6. Hudon, Marek & Périlleux, Anaïs, 2014. "Surplus distribution and characteristics of social enterprises: Evidence from microfinance," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 147-157.

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