Blog Category


Increasing financial access in Ethiopia through mobile money

May 1st, 2023 • by Alan de Brauw

The mobile money revolution has begun to substantially increase financial access around the world. Mobile money accounts allow people previously excluded from the formal financial sector to access savings accounts, make payments to merchants, and make person-to-person transfers, among other services. Research has shown that mobile money access can have important effects on key outcomes such as improved resilience and food security.

Developing and implementing Picture-Based Advisories (PBA) for farmers in Kenya

Jan 16th, 2023 • by Francisco Ceballos, Berber Kramer, and Benjamin Kivuva

IFPRI’s picture-based insurance (PBI) initiative, recognized as a CGIAR@50 Innovation and active since 2016, relies on participating farmers to upload smartphone pictures of their fields at intervals throughout the growing season. In the event of bad weather, pests, disease, or other problems that harm the crops, the photos are used to assess the damage and trigger insurance payouts.

How mobile technologies are reducing gender inequities in Tanzania’s agrifood system

Dec 21st, 2022 • by Christian Kamm

In the spring of 2022, we taught a graduate level course titled “Agri-food Systems and Economic Development” in Georgetown University’s Global Human Development Program. One of the assignments was writing a policy brief on the impact of a major shock to food systems (such as a significant policy or technological change, natural disaster, or the COVID-19 pandemic) on a sub-population in a country or region. This post by Christian Kamm is based on the assignment.

Telecommunications for rainfall monitoring

Feb 27th, 2020 • by Sara Gustafson

By Noam David, Oliver Gao, and Yanyan Liu


The lack of accurate rainfall measurements in developing countries poses problems in monitoring crop yields, which in turn can make it difficult for the providers of rainfall-based index insurance to gauge risks and set rates accurately.