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Efficiency in microfinance: financial and social performance of agricultural credit cooperatives in Bulgaria

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  • Florian Amersdorffer

    (Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Development in Central and Eastern Europe (IAMO), Sachsen Anhalt, Germany)

  • Gertrud Buchenrieder

    (1] Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Development in Central and Eastern Europe (IAMO), Sachsen Anhalt, Germany[2] Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU), Sachsen Anhalt, Germany)

  • Raushan Bokusheva

    (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Zurich, Switzerland)

  • Axel Wolz

    (Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Development in Central and Eastern Europe (IAMO), Sachsen Anhalt, Germany)

Abstract

Efficiency in microfinance requires accounting for a specific ambiguous production goal. Beyond financial performance, microfinance institutions are to be assessed with regard to their social impact. Based on a comprehensive data collection campaign on 15 Bulgarian agricultural credit cooperatives (ACCs), we compiled a database uniting financial (perennial data from 2000 to 2009) and social performance indicators (2009). The social performance assessment follows an internationally renowned methodology of social auditing. It provides the database for the construction of a social output, which, apart from outreach, evaluates social network quality, client benefits (protection from over-indebtedness) and other items that have not been assessed in efficiency analysis before. We develop a new analytical model for Data Envelopment Analysis and gain meaningful results for the sample of ACCs. Interestingly, the efficiency rankings revealed that only ACCs with sound financial performance can achieve a higher ranking in the specification including the social output.

Suggested Citation

  • Florian Amersdorffer & Gertrud Buchenrieder & Raushan Bokusheva & Axel Wolz, 2015. "Efficiency in microfinance: financial and social performance of agricultural credit cooperatives in Bulgaria," Journal of the Operational Research Society, Palgrave Macmillan;The OR Society, vol. 66(1), pages 57-65, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:pal:jorsoc:v:66:y:2015:i:1:p:57-65
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    Cited by:

    1. Niels Hermes & Marek Hudon, 2018. "Determinants Of The Performance Of Microfinance Institutions: A Systematic Review," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 32(5), pages 1483-1513, December.
    2. Hermes, Cornelis & Hudon, M., 2018. "Determinants of the Performance of Microfinance Institutions: A Systematic Review," Research Report 2018008, University of Groningen, Research Institute SOM (Systems, Organisations and Management).

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