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Infrastructure deficiencies and adoption of mobile money in Sub-Saharan Africa

Author

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  • Mothobi, Onkokame
  • Grzybowski, Lukasz

Abstract

We use survey data conducted in 11 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa in 2011 to analyze how the availability of physical infrastructure influences adoption of mobile phones and usage of mobile services. The availability of physical service infrastructure is approximated by data on nighttime light intensity in the areas in which survey respondents reside. After controlling for a number of individual and household characteristics including disposable income, we find that adoption of mobile phones is higher in areas with better physical infrastructure. However, mobile phone users who live in areas with poor infrastructure are more likely to rely on mobile phones to make financial transactions than individuals living in areas with better infrastructure. On the other hand, the use of mobile phones to access services such as email, skype, social media networks and Internet browsing is not dependent on the availability of physical infrastructure. Our results support the notion that mobile phones improve the livelihood of individuals residing in remote areas by providing them with access to financial services which are otherwise not available physically.

Suggested Citation

  • Mothobi, Onkokame & Grzybowski, Lukasz, 2017. "Infrastructure deficiencies and adoption of mobile money in Sub-Saharan Africa," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 71-79.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:iepoli:v:40:y:2017:i:c:p:71-79
    DOI: 10.1016/j.infoecopol.2017.05.003
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    Cited by:

    1. Luc Jacolin & Massil Keneck & Alphonse Noah, 2019. "Informal Sector and Mobile Financial Services in Developing Countries: Does Financial Innovation Matter?," Working papers 721, Banque de France.
    2. Oluwarotimi Ayokunnu Owolabi & Asa-Ruth Oboku Oku & Abidemi Alejo & Toun Ogunbiyi & Jeremiah Ifeanyi Ubah, 2021. "Access to Electricity, Information and Communications Technology (ICT), and Financial Development: Evidence From West Africa," International Journal of Energy Economics and Policy, Econjournals, vol. 11(2), pages 247-259.
    3. Serge Ky & Clovis Rugemintwari & Alain Sauviat, 2019. "Friends or foes? Mobile money interaction with formal and informal finance," Working Papers hal-02000982, HAL.
    4. Houngbonon, Georges V. & Le Quentrec, Erwan, 2019. "Access to Electricity and ICT Usage: A Country-level Assessment on Sub-Saharan Africa," 2nd Europe – Middle East – North African Regional ITS Conference, Aswan 2019: Leveraging Technologies For Growth 201728, International Telecommunications Society (ITS).
    5. N'dri, Lasme Mathieu & Kakinaka, Makoto, 2020. "Financial inclusion, mobile money, and individual welfare: The case of Burkina Faso," Telecommunications Policy, Elsevier, vol. 44(3).
    6. Ky, Serge Stéphane & Rugemintwari, Clovis & Sauviat, Alain, 2021. "Friends or Foes? Mobile money interaction with formal and informal finance," Telecommunications Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(1).
    7. Joël Cariolle & David Carroll, 2020. "The Use of Digital for Public Service Provision in Sub-Saharan Africa," Working Papers hal-03004535, HAL.
    8. Mamadou Saliou Barry & Anna Creti, 2020. "Pay-as-you-go contracts for electricity access: bridging the « last mile » gap? A case study in Benin," Working Papers 2006, Chaire Economie du climat.
    9. Scott Burns, 2018. "M‐Pesa and the ‘Market‐Led’ Approach to Financial Inclusion," Economic Affairs, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(3), pages 406-421, October.
    10. Barry, Mamadou Saliou & Creti, Anna, 2020. "Pay-as-you-go contracts for electricity access: Bridging the “last mile” gap? A case study in Benin," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(C).
    11. Joel Cariolle, 2020. "International Connectivity and the Digital Divide in Sub-Saharan Africa," Working Papers hal-02865546, HAL.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Mobile money; M-Pesa; Sub-Saharan Africa; Nighttime light data;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • O18 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Urban, Rural, Regional, and Transportation Analysis; Housing; Infrastructure
    • L96 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Telecommunications

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