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Banking on Self-help Groups reviews the existing state of affairs in respect of the SHG (Self-help Group) movement and addresses the question of what should be the next phase of development of the SHGs. It identifies the policy gaps and opportunities that exist for the SHGs to be mainstreamed further into the formal financial system.
The author examines elements of strategy and design being adopted by the National Rural Livelihoods Mission as also the potential role of NABARD in the development of SHGs in the future. The study focuses on three core issues pertaining to SHGs. These relate to (i) cost-effectiveness, (ii) sustainability, and (iii) impact, i.e., the development cost of SHGs and SHG-based institutions, the sustainability of SHG models and community institutions fostered by them, and the economic and social impact on SHG members.
The book concludes with a discussion of proposals and institutional arrangements that provide the way forward for the continued and uninterrupted growth of SHGs as an agency for change in the rural sector of India.
About the Author
Ajay Tankha is an economist with over 35 years' experience of teaching, training and research in development studies, rural finance and microfinance. He has been associated with CARE-India's CASHE project, GTZ (now GIZ) Rural Finance Programme, American India Foundation, Sa-Dhan, Access Development Services, EDA Rural Systems and Small Industries Development Bank of India. In addition, he has prepared studies sponsored
by the World Bank, International Finance Corporation, Ford Foundation, Rabobank, ICCO and Cordaid, the Netherlands.
Mr Tankha was International Head of Microfinance of ActionAid UK, where he directed a global review of its savings and credit programmes, including impact assessment studies in India, Bangladesh, Kenya, Ethiopia and Ghana. Earlier, he worked as Economist with the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development in India. He has also taught economics and development studies at leading universities in India, the Netherlands and Vietnam.
Mr Tankha has authored several research papers and publications on microfinance and rural livelihoods including two books on self-help groups. He is currently an independent consultant based in New Delhi.