Bringing Financial Literacy and Education to Low and Middle Income Countries

21 Pages Posted: 14 Nov 2010

See all articles by Robert Holzmann

Robert Holzmann

University of Malaya; IZA Institute of Labor Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute); World Bank

Date Written: November 11, 2010


This chapter presents a World Bank led work program that is financed under a trust fund by the Russian Federation. This program together with other activities, partly led by the OECD, aims at supporting the development of effective financial literacy and education strategies and programs in low and middle income countries. The work program and the selected two activities and their staging have been motivated by the experiences and lessons of high-income countries with financial literacy programs and the deviating characteristics of low and middle income countries; both are reviewed in the paper. The first activity will develop an operational survey instrument to measure financial capability in low and middle income countries across time and space. It takes as starting point the capability approach developed by the UK Financial Service Authority but adjusted through button-up multistage country pilots providing competitive grants and expert advice to the participating countries. The second activity will develop a common results framework that is linked to an M&E Toolkit to assess the impact of financial education programs and alternative interventions. Competitive grants are provided for impact evaluations of financial education programs and other interventions that fulfill criteria with regard to topics, delivery mechanism, results framework, and evaluation methods. As this is a multi-year work program in progress, the interactions with the international research community will be crucial to participate in the work and to provide feedback and guidance.

Keywords: countries, financial education, literacy, income, saving, program, population, World Bank

Suggested Citation

Holzmann, Robert, Bringing Financial Literacy and Education to Low and Middle Income Countries (November 11, 2010). Pension Research Council WP 2010-38, Available at SSRN: or

Robert Holzmann (Contact Author)

University of Malaya ( email )

University of Malaya
Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan 50603

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20433
United States

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