Mission Critical: Enabling Digital Payments for Development

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Jamie M. Zimmerman. Support and inputs from USAID staff, Matt Homer, Fernando Maldonado, Paul Nelson and Tom Gibb and FHI 360 staff, Shailee Adinolfi, Carrie Averch, and Patrick Malone.

Resource Posted: 
Wednesday, May 31, 2017

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The world is going digital. World-wide, digital technologies are enabling the creation of cheaper, faster, safer, and increasingly ubiquitous tools to tackle intractable development challenges. As a new, global digital economy emerges, the question is no longer if the digital ecosystem is relevant to USAID’s objective to end extreme poverty and promote resilient, democratic societies, but how. This USAID Opportunity Brief is a guide to help USAID and other government employees deepen their engagement with policy makers and regulators in emerging markets to advance inclusive access to affordable, convenient and safe financial products and services.

The Five Cs Framework introduced in this brief offers a range of tactics—from highest to lowest commitment of either capacity or resources—that have been shown to have strategic impact:

C1: Champion: Identify or become someone who can use enthusiasm and commitment to influence decision makers and relay policy, practice and strategy.
C2: Connect: Leverage existing and ongoing relationships to broker connections with key stakeholders and technical expertise.
C3: Convene: Harness convening power and an ability to serve as a neutral third party to bring together strategic stakeholders for inclusive discussions on how to enable digital payments to achieve strategic objectives
C4: Catalyze: Catalyze the advancement of digital payments through investments in research, experimentation, capacity building and partnerships.
C5: Create: Work directly with governments and other stakeholders to create new and innovative efforts to facilitate the healthy and robust growth of the market, as well as through public-private partnerships, grant provision, or other market facilitation tools.

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