What’s wrong with microfinance? A book review

2013 IJRSM – Volume 2 Issue 1


Rouf, Kazi Abdur*
Social Economy Centre, University of Toronto, Canada (rouf56@hotmail.com)


This paper reviews the book “What’s wrong with microfinance?” edited by Thomas Dichter and Malcolm Harper (2007). Many articles of the book mention different micro-credit programs in the world and make sociological analysis and interpretations. Many writers connect micro-credit with other societal problems such as capitalism, commercialization of micro-financing, high interest of rates, peer pressure coercive loan repaying provisions and profit making neo-liberal agenda affect the poor through micro financing. The paper reviews the articles from the author’s micro-credit working experience in terms of people’s quantitative (economic) growth and qualitative (social livelihood improvement) development. The easy also reviews debates issues raised by different writers in the book and addresses missing points found in the articles. Moreover, this paper draws attention micro finance programs need public and private financial supports to increase loan disbursement size with less interest rate for micro-entrepreneurs’ micro-enterprise development. The micro-credit programs should emphasize and run with human economics instead profit making economics. In addition, the business incubation/mentoring support and citizenry skills development services are essentials for quantitative and qualitative development of the micro-borrowers. Moreover, rehabilitation schemes in crisis period can assist delinquent borrowers to revive their businesses when their business is in crisis.

Keywords: commercialization of microfinance; capitalism; Grameen Bank; group lending; micro-borrowers; micro-credit; micro-entrepreneurs; micro finance institutions


DOI: https://doi.org/10.5861/ijrsm.2012.139

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