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Help Build a Cash Transfer Technology Catalog

By Guest Writer on March 9, 2016


The number of technology tools to support digital payments and vouchers can be overwhelming, especially in humanitarian response, where time is limited and situations change rapidly. The Electronic Cash Transfer Learning Action Network (ELAN) wants to make it easier for humanitarians to quickly find and use the best technology for electronic cash and electronic vouchers to assist survivors of natural disasters and conflict with a “cash transfer technology catalog.”

The catalog will contain information on product features, price, deployment history, and supplier points of contact to help teams research and compare relevant tech products for specific contexts, partners and programs. The catalog would not replace standard procurement and vetting processes and would only include tech products that support cash and voucher programming.

Please RSVP now to join us in London on 16th March or Washington DC on 24th March to help shape what this catalog will look like. We invite humanitarians, procurement, and tool providers to work practically on the design to ensure it will demystify requirements or technology as well as foster better links with providers and users.

If you cannot make these dates and still want to contribute, tell us in the comments. What services should we include? Which have you used? What was your experience?

Catalog Design

We envision that the catalog will be primarily organized by function. Main categories will include:

  • Beneficiary Information Management: Tools that support the collection and management
    of information about program beneficiaries/participants, including registration processes and support adherence to regulations like Know Your Customer. There is potential for this to be linked to in-kind distributions.
  • E-vouchers: Tools that digitize voucher distributions, transactions and reconciliation with merchants.
  • E-Cash: Any electronic substitute for cash that provides full flexibility for purchases. It may be stored, spent, and/or received through a mobile phone, prepaid debit/ATM card or other electronic transfer. This might include closed or open loop services – or a hybrid.

We anticipate that each product description will contain costs, photos, and links to demos and further information, along with deployment history. Be sure to join us in London or Washington, DC to craft what the final catalog entries will look like to make sure its useful for you.

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3 Comments to “Help Build a Cash Transfer Technology Catalog”

  1. Maria Ahmad says:

    As Team Leader of the Beneficiary Communications of the multi-donor funded Citizen Damage Compensation Program (CDCP) in Pakistan 2011-2012 (1.6million families) and the subsequent Grievance Redressal program 2012/13 (1.1million households) to manage/respond to beneficiary grievances, including basic financial literacy and awareness, I strongly believe the catalog needs to include a “beneficiary communications and feedback” section. How to communicate during/immediately after a humanitarian disaster, what to communicate for a cash transfer program, creating feedback/accountability mechanisms, using humanitarian principles to ensure adequate grievance redressal, challenges/opportunities of using ICT/Technology for Development/mobile technology for CTs among illiterate communities, etc.

  2. Keith says:

    For Beneficiary Information Management, Last Mile Mobile Solutions (LMMS) is a tool that allows humanitarian staff to digitally register and verify beneficiaries, plan and manage distributions as well as reporting. In addition LMMS can generate Payment Instruction Files for use by third parties (such as Mobile Network Operators) for e-payments.

  3. Dave says:

    Hi. My company has an E-Cash system designed specifically for humanitarian or development management needs.It is a new company by the way and it pursues local socioeconomic development through partnership with similarly motivated organizations.