Case Study

Study on social norms hindering financial inclusion and financial capability of consumers in the Kyrgyz Republic and the Republic of Tajikistan

February 15, 2023

Social norms – the informal rules that influence how people behave and expect others to behave – can play a significant role in driving financial decisions, including how, where, and what people save for. The effect that social norms have on the financial inclusion of specific target populations is an emerging field of research whose importance is becoming increasingly recognized, but which has not been systematically analyzed or incorporated into financial inclusion programming. This study aims to address this knowledge gap, by providing deep, actionable insights into savings and financial planning behaviors. It diagnoses the factors driving women’s and youth’s savings and financial planning behaviors, including the extent to which social norms influence their decision and ability to save formally and more productively, as well as why, and how they are enforced. The goal of this study is to guide practitioners toward understanding of these underlying dynamics, so that interventions can be designed that target the root causes of consumer behaviors which limit the ability of women and youth to save formally and more productively.