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Can Microfinance Empower Women? Self-Help Groups in India Image

Promoting Inclusive Markets and Financial Systems

Can Microfinance Empower Women? Self-Help Groups in India

Can Microfinance Empower Women? Self-Help Groups in India

Summary

This article analyzes the impact of self-help groups (SHGs) on women’s empowerment in India. It interprets the World Bank’s definition of empowerment in the South Asian context, and argues that empowerment occurs when women challenge existing norms to effectively improve their well-being.The article states that SHGs, where a majority of groups are linked through NGOs that provide technical and financial support, have a greater ability to empower women compared to minimalist microfinance programs. SHGs can ensure lasting empowerment by placing greater emphasis on training, education and awareness-building.

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