Reducing Rural Poverty in Asia

Reducing Rural Poverty in Asia: Challenges and Opportunities for Microenterprises and Public Employment Schemes

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Summary

Fight rural poverty through the creation of significant policy mechanisms, microenterprises, and employment programs

The majority of the world’s poor live in Asia, and most of these live in rural areas. These areas are also infamous for the food insecurity and malnutrition associated with poverty. Making even a modest dent in rural Asian poverty has the potential to realize large gains in global human development.

Reducing Rural Poverty in Asia provides evidence-based guidelines for policymakers in developing countries, for researchers focusing on development problems, and for the international development assistance community in the continuing search for ways to effectively reduce poverty in the developing world. Detailed examinations are clearly presented on the efforts for poverty alleviation through microenterprise development and rural public employment programs that focus on public works and household/small-scale industries. Asia-based case studies of various microenterprises and rural public employment projects reveal important policy mechanisms and the effectiveness of each poverty reduction measure. Tables, figures, and relevant glossaries make unfamiliar terms and difficult information easy to understand.

Part I of Reducing Rural Poverty in Asia:

  • presents a framework for the analysis of rural microenterprises with a focus on microfinance
  • highlights the main findings of country-specific case studies
  • suggests guidelines for an appropriate strategy for the provision of microfinance to reach the poor, alleviate poverty, and create financial stability
  • analyzes the issues relating to public wage employment schemes and the principal findings of the case studies
  • draws policy conclusions for the formulation of effective public employment schemes
Part II of Reducing Rural Poverty in Asia presents case studies conducted in India, Bangladesh, and the Philippines—along with revealing conclusions. These studies include:
  • the SIDBI Foundation for Micro Credit in India—including the continuing problem of the exclusion of the poorest
  • the Maharashtra Rural Credit Project in India and concerns about the sustainability of the financial infrastructure
  • the Small Enterprises Development Project in Bangladesh and the high rate of return on capital from financed enterprises
  • the successes of the Grameen Uddog, Agrani Bank Micro-Enterprise Development Unit (MEDU), and Kishoreganj Community-Based Projects in Bangladesh
  • the income-stabilizing role of the Employment Guarantee Scheme in Maharashtra, India
  • guidelines for the Public Works Employment policy and implementation in the Philippines
Reducing Rural Poverty in Asia is a concise overview of the crucial research undertaken at the request of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and makes this a vital resource for researchers, educators, students, policymakers, and development experts working towards the goal of poverty reduction.

Table of Contents

  • List of Acronyms
  • Foreword (Joachim von Braun)
  • Preface
  • PART I: SYNTHESIS AND MAJOR LESSONS
  • Chapter 1. Rural Poverty and the Nonfarm Sector in Rural Asia
  • Rural Poverty and the Nonfarm Employment Nexus
  • Public Policies for the Nonfarm Sector
  • Chapter 2. Rural Nonfarm Microenterprise: Salient Features and Issues
  • Introduction
  • Microfinance
  • Financial Sustainability
  • Nonfinancial Inputs
  • Chapter 3. Bangladesh Case Studies: Review and Analysis
  • Main Features of Microenterprise/Finance Projects
  • Review of Performance
  • Conclusions
  • Chapter 4. Indian Case Studies: Review and Analysis
  • Maharashtra Rural Credit Project
  • SIDBI Foundation for Micro Credit
  • Main Findings
  • Conclusions
  • Chapter 5. Overview of Country Experiences
  • Introduction
  • Patterns of Nonfarm Lending
  • Institutional Mechanisms for Credit Delivery
  • Noncredit Inputs: Skill, Transfer of Technology, and Market Access
  • Appendix: Rural Employment Support Foundation
  • Chapter 6. Conclusions: Microfinance for Microenterprise
  • Group versus Individual Lending
  • Targeting the Poor
  • To Reach the Poorest: An Illustration
  • Financial Sustainability
  • Upscaling and Financing the Missing Middle
  • Not by Credit Alone
  • Chapter 7. Public Employment Schemes: Case Studies in India, Bangladesh, and the Philippines
  • Introduction
  • The Food-for-Work Program in Bangladesh
  • Jawahar Rozgar Yojana in India
  • Maharashtra Employment Guarantee Scheme in India
  • Public Employment Program in the Philippines
  • Chapter 8. Review of Country Experiences of Public Employment and Policy Conclusions
  • Experience Review
  • Conclusions
  • PART II: COUNTRY CASE STUDIES
  • Chapter 9. SIDBI Foundation for Micro Credit (Raghav Gaiha)
  • Introduction
  • Major Findings
  • Conclusions
  • Chapter 10. Maharashtra Rural Credit Project (Raghav Gaiha)
  • Introduction
  • Targeting of MRCP
  • Self-Help Groups
  • Exclusion of the Poorest
  • Nonfarm Activities
  • Autonomy and Empowerment of Women
  • Awareness, Skills, and Training
  • Conclusions
  • Chapter 11. Small Enterprises Development Project in Bangladesh (Rushidan Islam Rahman)
  • Introduction
  • Basic Features, Targets, and Achievement
  • Loan Disbursement, Cost, and Period of Loans
  • Background of Borrowers
  • Nonfarm Enterprises Financed by SEDP
  • Use of and Returns on SEDP Loans
  • Conclusions
  • Chapter 12. A Study on Grameen Uddog, MEDU, and Kishoreganj Projects (Sajjad Zohir)
  • Introduction
  • Grameen Uddog: A Commercial Venture to Promote Rural Nonfarm Employment
  • Employment Generation Project for the Rural Poor: An Agrani Bank Initiative
  • Kishoreganj Sadar Thana Project: A Community-Based Approach
  • Conclusions: Lessons for the Future
  • Chapter 13. A Review of the Employment Guarantee Scheme in Maharashtra (Raghav Gaiha)
  • Introduction
  • ICRISAT Survey
  • Ahmadnagar Survey
  • Salient Features
  • Recent Developments
  • Performance of EGS
  • Direct Transfer Benefits
  • Indirect Transfer Benefits
  • Income Stabilization
  • Supplementary Analysis
  • Conclusions
  • Chapter 14. Public Works Employment and Rural Poverty Alleviation in the Philippines (Roehlano M. Briones)
  • Introduction
  • Public Works Employment Programs in the Philippines
  • The Case Studies: In-Depth Analysis
  • Case Studies: Wage Benefits and Targeting
  • Final Evaluation: Lessons Learned and Best Practices
  • Notes
  • Bibliography
  • Index

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