Grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation renewed its existing partnership with the Fletcher Leadership Program for Financial Inclusion by giving the program a three-year grant in March 2024. Through a nine-month certificate program, this funding will be used to support mid-career public servants from around the world who are working to advance positive change in inclusive finance. While the partnership between the Gates Foundation and the FLPFI Program commenced in 2010 with nine fellows from eight countries, it has grown substantially to twenty-four fellows from nineteen countries this year. Up to date, the FLPFI has 184 fellowship alumni, 232 8QM participants, and has awarded 13 research prizes to its alumni from different countries.

2024 FLPFI Fellowship Launched

On February 15th, 2024, the Fletcher Leadership Program for Financial Inclusion (FLPFI) launched its 2024 fellowship. This year’s cohort features 24 individuals out of which 16 are women. Both the gender ratio and the number of fellows is the highest the program has seen since its launch in 2010. The fellows come from 19 countries and are currently undergoing the online portion of their training. Fellows will complete 13 online modules, combining independent work with collaborative online discussions with peers.  The modules will cover topics in financial inclusion and give fellows a chance to interact with their colleagues on a digital platform. From June 2-14, 2024, fellows will come to Medford, MA for a two-week residency at the Fletcher School.

8QM Trainings in Tanzania and Fiji

The FLPFI conducted two regional Eight Question Method for Policy Development (8QM) trainings for the staff of the Reserve Bank of Fiji in Dec 2023 and the staff of the Central Bank of Tanzania in March 2024. The 8QM is a core framework of FLPFI designed for policymakers in their analysis and implementation of innovative, adaptive, and evidence‐based policies. In both trainings, stakeholders from the public and private sectors participated in the sessions in addition to the staff of the two banks. The training in Fiji investigated women’s access to and usage of financial services, building upon research some of the participants began during their FLPFI fellowship. On the other hand, the sessions in Tanzania sought to bolster efforts by the Central Bank in the implementation of their newly enacted National Financial Inclusion Strategy. These trainings were held in collaboration with the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF), the UN’s flagship financing entity for the world’s 46 Least Developed Countries (LDCs).

2024 Research Prize

FLPFI has announced the recipients of the 2024 Research Prize. The aim of the Research Prize is to grant alumni of the Fellowship program and the 8QM trainings, an opportunity to incorporate evidence-based innovations into their work as policymakers. Winners of the FLPFI Research Prize are offered in-kind and financial support to conduct policy-relevant research on a financial inclusion challenge in their countries. This year, one of the two recipients of the Research Prize is an alumna from the Central African Republic. Her project is an experimental study focused on exploring barriers to mobile money adoption in Pissa, a village in the Central African Republic. The second recipient is an alumna from the Bank of Namibia whose project is on utilizing inclusive green finance to promote and sustain agriculture practice among rural farmers in Namibia.

In 2023, alumni from the Central Bank of Armenia, Bank of Uganda, and the Reserve Bank of Fiji were awarded the Research Prize. Their projects are in the concluding stages.

Nabila Okino

Nabila Okino – The Fletcher School Leadership Program for Financial Inclusion

Her Opportunity Story spotlights Nigerian women who have landed transformative opportunities and provides detailed insights for other Nigerian women who would be applying to those opportunities. Read More

FLPFI Fellowship 2023

Three years after the Covid-19 pandemic, in May 2023, the FLPFI Fellowship residency was held  at Tufts University. During the two-week intensive residency program, fellows participated in workshops on the 8QM policy development method and worked on their financial inclusion challenges. Distinguished academics, practitioners, and field experts also delivered lectures on a variety of topics including the financial lives of the poor, identifying and testing assumptions, working with the private sector, strategic negotiation and influence, legal options for policymakers, digital financial services, leading financial institutions, policy implementation, foundations of public speaking impact measurement . Also, during the residency, two of the FLPFI alumni, Faiqa Naseem, Joint Director at the State Bank of Pakistan, and Jorge Moncayo, from the Superintendence of Popular and Solidarity Economy (SEPS), Ecuador, presented their experience of applying the 8QM method in developing policies to address the gender gap in financial inclusion in their respective countries.

Throughout the course, the fellows worked on their financial inclusion problems by applying the 8QM method and presented their policy pitches to a panel of academics and field experts on the last day of the program which was held at the Museum of Science in Boston, Massachusetts.

Digitalization of Government Payments in Jordan

Recently, the Jordan Payments and Clearing Company (JoPACC) published its research report of Digitalization of Government Payments in Jordan. The research was conducted by Moyad Ghannam, Enas Halaiqah, Nour Khammash, Nad Sarabi, and Leen Hashem of the JoPACC with the technical and financial support of the Fletcher Leadership Program for Financial Inclusion Research Prize.

8QM 2022 Training in Ethiopia

8QM Training in Ethiopia – October 2022

In partnership with the Tufts University Fletcher School Leadership Program for Financial Inclusion (FLPFI), UNCDF coordinated the Eight Question Method (8QM) training to support the work of the Women’s Digital Financial Inclusion (WDFI) Advocacy Hub Ethiopia Coalition to promote strong gender-inclusive financial ecosystems. The 8QM is a proven framework which guides attendees to develop an original project grounded on evidence that seeks to positively impact the livelihoods of the target group they chose to focus on. Read more

Bezawit Fantu

Are Financial Services Only Reserved For The Well-off?

Recent 8QM Ethiopia alum Bezawit Fantu wrote an op-ed for K-flip about how the training will inform her work in closing the gender gap in digital financial services. Read more

Sophia Abu

Blazing a Trail for Women’s Financial Inclusion in Nigeria

Article by 2018 fellowship alum Sophia Abu, Head, Gender Desk – Financial Inclusion Delivery Unit, Central Bank of Nigeria on strategic imperatives for addressing women’s financial inclusion. Read more

Mir Ahmad Shekib
(Photo Credit: Alonso Nichols)

One Year After He Fled His Native Country, An Afghan Rebuilds His Life at Tufts

With a research position at The Fletcher School, a former bank official shares his expertise. Read more

FLPFI Alumni Breakfast in Bogotá, Colombia

Last June FLPFI had the pleasure of hosting an informal working breakfast in Bogotá, Colombia. The purpose of this event was to reconnect with some of our alums and create links between FLPFI Colombian alumni, Fletcher Researchers, and MercyCorps/VenEsperanza implementing partners all working on financial inclusion in Colombia.