A look back at the 6th European Microfinance Research Conference
On 3rd, 4th and 5th June, Paris Dauphine University, the Institute for Research in Development (IRD) and Montpellier Business School had the honour of hosting and organizing in cooperation with The European Microfinance Platform (e- MFP) and the European Centre for Research and Microfinance (CERMi) the 6th European Microfinance Research Conference, bringing together 130 experts from all over the world.
Researchers and Professionals gathered to discuss the following issue: “New tools, new actors: goals, values and beneficiaries” in Microfinance. Anastasia COZARENCO, Research Professor and MBS Chair in Microfinance in Developed Countries, explains: “When we think about microfinance and micro-credit, we think first of all about developing countries.
“However, we can now see that these mechanisms, combined with the industrialization and increasing use of new technologies, have certainly promoted the financial inclusion of previously isolated areas and populations, but also created new risks such as the exploitation of individuals’ personal data for commercial purposes. Does Microfinance still aim to promote the financial inclusion of marginalized populations or turn these populations into new consumers? “
The purpose of these three days of round tables, debates and workshops was not necessarily to build an immediate response to these questions, but to encourage researchers and professionals to question the meaning of their research and practices, and to foster international collaboration.
Isabelle Guérin (IRD, co-organizer), Anastasia Cozarenco (MBS, co-organizer), Baptiste Venet (University Paris Dauphine, co-organizer), representatives of the Nepalese delegation.
Promoting social business and strengthening Microfinance Research at Montpellier Business School
In accordance with its mission to train responsible managers, Montpellier Business School received last March 4th Professor Muhammad Yunus, 2006 Nobel Peace Prize winner, pioneer of microcredit, to raise awareness on Social Business. In order to deepen its pedagogical accompaniment and its academic expertise of this discipline, the Microfinance Chair of Montpellier Business School was created and is the only one to focus on developed countries.
Anastasia COZARENCO commented saying: “Following the success of this conference, we are preparing to roll out other initiatives to better meet the demands of Research in the field and to pass on the latest tools and innovations to students to make them aware of societal values throughout their career.”