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Seminar - The relevance of Islamic microfinance for social entrepreneurship and market inclusiveness: a global comparison with conventional microfinance

  • S314 (Paul Webley Wing), SOAS University of London (map)

Speaker: Robert Lensink, Professor of Finance and Financial Markets, University of Groningen
Chair: Victor Murinde, AXA Professor in Global Finance, SOAS University of London


With a newly conducted survey, this study constructs a data set of Islamic and conventional microfinance institutions (MFIs). Specifically, it identifies 101 Islamic MFIs operating globally, in both Islamic and non-Islamic countries. This data set enables a comparison of Islamic and non-Islamic MFIs in terms of outreach and
financial performance; the resulting evidence indicates that Islamic MFIs engage in more outreach than conventional MFIs, though the financial performance of the Islamic MFIs is somewhat weaker. The authors posit that Islamic MFIs perform better in their outreach because of their policy of not charging interest on loans, yet this policy also may cause a weaker  financial performance due to the more
expensive lending systems.

Co-authors: Syedah Ahmad and Annika Mueller

A sandwich lunch will be served.

The seminars are sponsored by grants from DFID and ESRC [ESRC Ref: ES/N013344/2], ESRC and NSFC [ESRC Ref: ES/P005241/1] and AXA Research Fund