Tag Archives: biashara

Mobile Phones and the Informal Economy

Over the past week or so, I’ve been scanning literature from African researchers on the broad theme of mobile phones and the informal economy. Here are some of my top findings: The Mobile Phone is a Business Tool and Income Generator – Regardless of the region (and cultural context) of study –  Cameroon or Cote […]

Posted in Africa, Airtime, Banking, Cashless transactions, Consumer Behaviour, Ecosystem, Flexibility, Income, Literature review, Mobile platform, perfect storm, Perspective, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Sub Saharan Africa, Technology | Also tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Financial Patterns at the Last Mile of the Farm to Fork Value Chain

This value web illustrates the last mile of the farm to fork agricultural value chain in the state of Maharashtra, India. We’d mapped it during our project/s for the Dutch government back in mid 2013, where we’d introduced human centered design thinking for sustainable agricultural value chain development. Subsequently, I led a multidisciplinary team conducting […]

Posted in African Consumer Market, Analysis, Biashara Economics, Business Models, Consumer Behaviour, Ecosystem, Emerging Markets, Frameworks, India, Perspective, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Research, Rural Economy, South Asia, Strategy, Sub Saharan Africa, Systems, User research | Also tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Rural Household Financial Management on Irregular Incomes

While all farms are not alike, and scale and variety and geography differs, the pattern of household financial management holds its fundamental logic across continents. As we saw previously, an experienced farmer tends to fall somewhere in between a salaried employee and an odd job labourer in their ability to predict with any reasonable degree […]

Posted in Africa, Analysis, ASEAN, Biashara Economics, Business Models, Cashless transactions, Cattle, Economy, Ecosystem, Emerging Markets, Frameworks, Indigenous & Traditional, Informal & Flexible, Livestock, Mama Biashara, Perspective, Philipines, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Research, Rural Economy, Savings, Strategy, Sub Saharan Africa, User research | Also tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

East African Imports in rural Rwanda?

This highway ‘storefront’ in rural Rwanda made me wonder if the trader had imported his goods rather than purchased them locally. And, further, if they were imports from Kenya. First, unlike the majority of such roadside shops, he is dealing with multiple products – while all are related to home decor, they are made of […]

Posted in Africa, African Consumer Market, Afrique francophone, Analysis, Assumption filter, Biashara Economics, Consommateurs, East African Community, Flexibility, Informal & Flexible, Marchés africains, Marketing, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, rural, Rural Economy, Strategy, Sub Saharan Africa | Also tagged , , , | Leave a comment

TEDTalk video: Recognizing the value creation and economic contribution of the informal economy

My talk given at the TEDGlobal conference in Arusha, this August, went live on Ted.com at some point during the night a couple of days ago. At that very moment, I was on a Finnair flight from SIN to HEL, so with a wee bit of delay, here’s the link to the video of the […]

Posted in Africa, African Consumer Market, Analysis, Assumption filter, Base of the Pyramid, Biashara Economics, Business Models, Consumer Behaviour, East African Community, Economy, Ecosystem, Emerging Markets, Frameworks, global, Indigenous & Traditional, Informal & Flexible, Innovation Planning, Mama Biashara, Marchés africains, Perspective, Platforms, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Projects and Reports, Research, Rural Economy, Sub Saharan Africa, Systems, UCSD, User research, Value | Also tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fundamental Elements of Informal Sector Commercial Activity

There are two key elements which underpin the dynamics of any business or commercial enterprise in the informal sector. These are Time and Money. A generalized framework can be diagrammed, as shown above, where the dotted line denotes the degree of uncertainty and volatility of an individual’s cash flow patterns – whether from a variety […]

Posted in African Consumer Market, Analysis, Assumption filter, Base of the Pyramid, Biashara Economics, Business Models, Economy, Ecosystem, Emerging Markets, Flexibility, Frameworks, global, Income, Informal & Flexible, Migrant worker, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Projects and Reports, Research, Risk, Rural Economy, South Asia, Strategy, Sub Saharan Africa, User research | Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Work in Progress: An Introduction to the Informal Economy’s Commercial Environment

This topic is being shared in the form of a collection of essays on the following themes, each becoming hyperlinked on completion. Do bookmark this page for regular updates. Introduction to Background and Context, some caveats apply Fundamental Elements of Informal Sector Commercial Activity Rural household financial management as a foundation Linkages and Networks span […]

Posted in Africa, Analysis, Assumption filter, Base of the Pyramid, Biashara Economics, Business Models, Cashless transactions, Collection, Consumer Behaviour, Economy, Ecosystem, Emerging Markets, Frameworks, global, Informal & Flexible, Mama Biashara, Marchés africains, Mobile platform, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Projects and Reports, Research, Rural Economy, Savings, South Asia, Strategy, Sub Saharan Africa, Systems, UCSD, User research | Also tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Deconstructing “Formalization” as Panacea for the Informal Economy

IGO definitions of the informal economy are crafted from a top down perspective (Global North*) of the operating environment prevalent in the economies of the developing world (Global South*). Further, they do not distinguish between the operating environment of the shadow economies of OECD nations, and those which encompass the unorganized sectors of trade and […]

Posted in Africa, Analysis, Assumption filter, Biashara Economics, Business Models, Culture, Design, Economy, Ecosystem, Emerging Markets, Frameworks, Informal & Flexible, Mama Biashara, Perspective, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Research, Strategy, Sub Saharan Africa, Systems | Also tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Exploring the Scope of Biashara Economics

There’s a dearth of research on the economics of biashara – the everyday commerce that keeps daily life running. And this hampers the efficacy of the design of programmes and policies meant for operating environments where the informal economy may be providing employment for more than half the working age population, and often, as high […]

Posted in Biashara Economics, global, Mama Biashara, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Research, Rural Economy | Also tagged , | Leave a comment

The dangerous assumption that there’s no competition from the informal sector

In addition, the informal economy of open street markets still dominates 90% of retail in large countries like Nigeria and Kenya, meaning it’s a near safe bet there’s plenty of room to grow. ~ Quartz Africa, Jan 2017 Failure is a risk, and an inescapable function of the amount of resources invested, not just money. […]

Posted in African Consumer Market, Assumption filter, Biashara Economics, Compétitivité, Consommateurs, Consumer Behaviour, Ecosystem, Ghana, Informal & Flexible, Innovation Planning, Kenya, Marchés africains, Marketing, Nigeria, Perspective, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Retail in Africa, Risk, Strategy, Sub Saharan Africa, urban, User research | Also tagged , , , | Leave a comment