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Democracy in Development: Insurance Innovations for the Poor

by Isobel Coleman
November 7, 2012

Carpenters carry a coffin shaped in the form of a fish over the main road in Teshie, a suburb of the Ghanaian capital of Accra, January 22, 2004. Funerals are important [social] occasions in this West African country and elaborate, brightly colored coffins have become an art form. Picture taken on January 22, 2004 (Wolfgang Rattay/Courtesy Reuters). Carpenters carry a coffin shaped in the form of a fish over the main road in Teshie, a suburb of the Ghanaian capital of Accra, January 22, 2004. Funerals are important [social] occasions in this West African country and elaborate, brightly colored coffins have become an art form. Picture taken on January 22, 2004 (Wolfgang Rattay/Courtesy Reuters).

Yesterday on my blog, I wrote about the obstacles that prevent poor people from obtaining insurance—and the innovations that are upending this reality. I focus on Ghana, where the organization MicroEnsure is offering low-cost life insurance tied to mobile phone use and savings accounts. As I explain:

Insurance is not something generally available to the poor, who arguably need it most. It is generally viewed as a luxury financial product, and financial institutions have shown little interest in creating insurance products to meet the needs of the poorest. But that is starting to change.

You can read the full post here.

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