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Does microfinance foster the development of its clients? A bibliometric analysis and systematic literature review

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  • João Paulo Coelho Ribeiro

    (Politécnico do Porto)

  • Fábio Duarte

    (University of Porto)

  • Ana Paula Matias Gama

    (University of Beira Interior)

Abstract

This paper conducts a scientometric analysis and systematic literature review to identify the trends in microfinance outcomes from the perspective of their recipients, specifically more vulnerable people, while also focusing on the demand side. Applying the keywords “co-occurrence networks” and “citation networks,” we examined 524 studies indexed on the ISI Web of Science database between 2012 and March 2021. The subsequent content analysis of bibliometric-coupled articles concerns the main research topics in this field: the socioeconomic outcomes of microfinance, the dichotomy between social performance and the mission drift of microfinance institutions, and how entrepreneurship and financial innovation, specifically through crowdfunding, mitigate poverty and empower the more vulnerable. The findings reinforce the idea that microfinance constitutes a distinct field of development thinking, and indicate that a more holistic approach should be adopted to boost microfinance outcomes through a better understanding of their beneficiaries. The trends in this field will help policymakers, regulators, and academics to examine the nuts and bolts of microfinance and identify the most relevant areas of intervention.

Suggested Citation

  • João Paulo Coelho Ribeiro & Fábio Duarte & Ana Paula Matias Gama, 2022. "Does microfinance foster the development of its clients? A bibliometric analysis and systematic literature review," Financial Innovation, Springer;Southwestern University of Finance and Economics, vol. 8(1), pages 1-35, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:fininn:v:8:y:2022:i:1:d:10.1186_s40854-022-00340-x
    DOI: 10.1186/s40854-022-00340-x
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