The main objective of this study is to assess the impact of ICT-based agricultural technical service on farmers’ household savings generation and credit loan payments. This study builds on the provision of Information Communication Technology-based decision software by the Philippines’ Department of Agriculture and the International Rice Research Institute, which acquires information about farmers’ fields, computes field-specific guidelines, and provides customized field-specific guidelines in local languages. As such agricultural technical support is provided through mobile technology, savings mobilization and payment functionality also become readily available to these underserved segments as well. Through the Microfinance Agriculture Loan Products (MALP), an initiative on agriculture business development with 6 pilot microfinance institutions in the Visayas and Mindanao, pilot MFIs will be able to engage farmers on the use of mobile technology for agricultural technical support and ultimately promote mobile banking services for savings and credit payments. This study consists of impact research on the use of ICT-based agricultural technical service relative to farmer savings generation and credit payments under the MALP program. This research provides an understanding of how mobile applications change farmers’ access to mobile financial services, the value of partnership in meeting farmers’ needs, and perceptions of farmer households about the program. Through this study there will be greater understanding of MFIs capability of pursuing new client segments, capturing greater customer data, and promoting cross-selling through ICT-based agricultural technical support and mobile money.
About the Researcher
Allerine B. Isles has 15 years of experience in business consultancy, events, and volunteer management, with a background in market research for the Middle East and North African market, setting up financial reporting, resource mobilization, asset management, performance management, and total quality management systems. Al has spearheaded business consultancy projects in the areas of human resource management, customer service, communications, wealth management, total quality systems in Malaysia, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, and other parts of the Middle East. She obtained a Masters in Public Administration at the University of the Philippines, Diliman National College of Public Administration and Governance. Her education also includes study of Project Management for NGOs at the Ateneo Center for Continuing Education, microfinance courses at the Asian Microfinance Innovation and Development Academy (AMiDA), and agribusiness development with the Wageningen University and Research Center in The Netherlands.