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Tackling poverty through “inclusive finance”- a case study of a Chinese rural village

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Tuesday, April 30, 2019
  • Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
    Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

Project Description

The promotion of “financial inclusion” as an approach to poverty alleviation, was recently officially proposed by the Chinese government, with the intention of facilitating access to affordable and safe financial services for low-income citizens and small businesses excluded from mainstream banking (“Decision of the CCCPC on Some Major Issues Concerning Comprehensively Deepening the Reform”, 2013, available at: http://www.china.org.cn/chinese/2014-01/16/content_31215162.htm).
The purpose of the “inclusive finance” initiative is to empower and transform villagers by giving them means and responsibility to develop sustainable approaches to agriculture and to escape the conditions of economic scarcity that constrain their lives.
The main research objectives of this PhD research project will be to: (1) Understand and assess the impacts and effectiveness of the “inclusive finance” program currently available to China’s rural residents; how accessible and cheap loans are changing lives and reducing poverty. (2) Understand the challenges and barriers to effective implementation of an “inclusive finance” poverty alleviation initiative in China, and the lessons that can be drawn from a case study of a rural village in China.
This project will adopt ethnographic approaches to embed the research in the local community and to gain acceptance and trust. The research will explore the effectiveness of the “inclusive initiative” by engaging with multiple actors, including those who are involved in the process of facilitating small loans to impoverished households and the recipients of such loans. The methods to be used will embrace interviews, observations, including participant observation, and content and discourse analysis.
Through analysis of the collected materials the research will provide some assessment the effectiveness of the inclusive finance initiative in meeting its aims of emancipatory empowerment, in the contexts studied. It will thereby provide policy makers with some guidance on the potential and effective design and implementation of inclusive and participatory approaches to powering poor people out of poverty through “inclusive finance”.

Funding Notes

Must have a First or Upper Second Class Honours (2:1) or a good Master's qualification in Accounting, Anthropology, Business Studies, Politics, Sociology or related Social Science subjects.
Applicants must meet the Language Requirements set by the University of Glasgow: View Website
Applicants must be fluent in spoken and written Chinese, with a HSK level of 5 (score 240 or above) or Level 6 (score 180 or above) if Chinese is not the first language.
Experience of conducting fieldwork and qualitative research is desirable but not essential. International research experience especially in China is also desirable but not essential.

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