My research explores disaster resilience microfinance as as means of protecting livelihoods in the face of extreme weather and natural hazards, in both low and lower-middle income countries. Through this, the existence or otherwise of a “transition phase” to disaster recovery is addressed, evaluating the potential for microfinance measures to expedite recovery processes and even circumvent the notion of a period of transition.
More specifically, my work centres around the investigation of microinsurance innovations as effective methods of risk transfer and business/livelihood continuation. Partnership networks, community engagement, indemnity vs. parametric index base designs, complementary awareness/education campaigns, government willingness/participation, and mechanisms such as subsidies and voluntary vs. obligatory adoption, are examined through the lens of both good practice and success vs. failure predictors.
A key challenge lies in product design, where a clear, sustainable business case for private sector actors (insurers, reinsurers, donors etc.) can harmonise with greater social equity, profit sharing and reinvestment back into low-income client benefits. Analysis will naturally assess the value of microinsurance to those it is designed to serve, as well as the justification for international investment in this particular mechanism over alternative disaster response and recovery initiatives.
I have a background in development research, having previously worked with poverty alleviation surveys in rural sub-Saharan Africa and on microfinance programme evaluation in India.