Analyze the main reasons for the success of the Grameen Bank and examine ways in which weaknesses concerning its impact can be overcome.

Hello. Could you please provide three case studies in which Grameen Bank succeed and examine their weaknesses. You could take articles from the jstor or websites that are related. As well as could you please provide clear arguments. Here’s the structure that shall be followed:

Analyse the main reasons for the success of the Grameen Bank and examine the ways in which weaknesses concerning its impact can be overcome.

Introduction – You must show why the topic is important

Microcredit (MC) is important as it represents a major academic battleground between supporters, who see it as a chance for one of the most marginalized groups – poor, rural females in developing countries to ‘catch-up’ by finally getting access to credit, which will allow them to improve life chances and detractors, who argue that it is part of the unwarranted and unfair financialization of development processes. That is, MC individualises development by lending to one person and putting huge pressure on them to make a success of the loan, measured in economic terms – increased productivity and profits resulting from investments in small enterprises. Moreover, MC has not led to any substantive changes in structural patterns of inequality in countries, such as Bangladesh, where it is prevalent.

Very briefly outline these two opposing views and then move to a focus on Grameen Bank – as the most well known provider of micro-credit globally – for your statement of organization (how you will organize the sections)/thesis. Outline which arguments you will focus on to highlight reasons for the success of Grameen then state which weaknesses will be addressed and how it will be suggested that they can be overcome.

Main Body

1. Background and context – define the concept of MC and summarise briefly its rise to importance in the context of the substantive influence of Grameen Bank. MC rose to prominence in the 1970s, much influenced by the founder of the Grameen Bank in Bangladesh, Muhammad Yunus. It progressed unevenly through the 1980s and picked up impetus during the 1990s. Currently, it is very influential and has been taken up by large multilateral organizations, such as the World Bank, by bilateral donors (DFID) and by grassroots groups, organizing their own MC programmes.

2. Arguments in favour of Grameen Bank as a Success – Divide into economic and social

Economic

Examine the increase in GDP in Bangladesh as a result of the work of Grameen..

Examine effects at the household and village level – females have more disposable income and spend it wisely to improve the diet, the health and the education of family members..

Examine individual effects on lives of borrowers – female success stories – new skills learned, confidence gained, lives transformed.

Social

Gender issues – rise in employment and empowerment of women. The work of Grameen has led to more visibility of women in the productive sector and thus to more acceptance of females outside the reproductive sphere in patriarchal societies.

Use Grameen Bank’s own website for recent facts and figures about the scale of its operations and Mohammed Yunus’ book for an overview of the rise of the bank from its founder.

3. Weaknesses of Grameen

Economic

Little substantive change in structural patterns of inequality at national level – land and

other assets still controlled by an elite minority

Narrow range of employment creation – food and textiles (seamstress work).

Male appropriation of profits – men take control of the loan and/or the profits..

Extremely poor not included – must be a small landowner

Mis-use of funds – corruption issues.

Ineffective and costly administration – lack of economies of scale.

Aggressive lending in some countries – suicides result as people cannot manage debts.

Social

Rise in violence against women – jealous men.

Resistance by religious groups – argue that traditional role of women is the

reproductive sphere.

4. Overcoming Weaknesses – Recent Initiatives

The move of Grameen away from individual loans to community-based loans

(collective multisectoral lending) – use of mobile phones for small user fee and fish

farming (not coy carp!) are two examples. You could focus on one or two of these

initiatives in examining ways Grameen could overcome its weaknesses.

Integrating state policies and help for Grameen programmes – complementarity.

This increases the beneficial effects of Grameen lending.

Should Grameen become more political – lobby the government for changes in policies

that benefit its borrowers? In this context, examine the clash between Mohammed Yunus

and the Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina.

Should Grameen work closely with the World Bank, which is a major advocate of

micro-credit? Why/why not?

Conclusion

As usual signal it and restate the thesis along with the main supporting arguments and evidence presented. End by going beyond the question by suggesting ways forward – for example, Grameen has been a success in certain ways, improving the position of women, in particular. However, question marks remain conceptually over the ability of Grameen to substantively change structural patterns of economic, political and social inequality in developing countries and over whether it over-stresses increasing profits as the key goal of development.

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