Guide to Increasing Women’s Financial Inclusion in Bangladesh Through Digital Financial Services

Guide / Handbook
Date Published: 
Aug 2017
Sinha, T. & Highet, C.

How can organizations improve women’s use of digital financial services?

Bangladesh has arisen as an interesting case of digital innovation because of the rapid growth of digital financial services (DFS), particularly through mobile financial services (MFS). However, despite rapid growth, a large portion of the population, especially women, remain unbanked with little access to formal financial services. Only 31% of Bangladeshis have access to a formal financial account, a number that is even lower for women (26%). As mobile penetration and connectivity expand across the nation, it offers a unique opportunity to expand financial services to both men and women alike.

Nonetheless, there are specific challenges around women’s access to digital financial services, in terms of reach, content and approach. This guide seeks to outline these barriers, and offers a resource for non-governmental organizations (NGOs) who are looking to include DFS in their programming and for DFS providers who are looking to understand the segment better. Through design, deployment and education, organizations can better address women’s perceptions of and challenges with using DFS.

South Asia