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Saving Up for a Rainy Day? Savings Groups and Resilience to Flooding in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

Panman, A; Kimacha, NN; Madison, I; Falisse, J-B; (2021) Saving Up for a Rainy Day? Savings Groups and Resilience to Flooding in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Urban Forum 10.1007/s12132-021-09424-w. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

This paper explores the role of savings groups in resilience to urban climate-related disasters. Savings groups are a rapidly growing phenomenon in Africa. They are decentralized, non-institutional groups that provide millions of people excluded from the formal banking sector with a trusted, accessible, and relatively simple source of microfinance. Yet there is little work on the impacts of savings groups on resilience to disasters. In this paper, we use a combination of quantitative and qualitative evidence from Dar es Salaam (Tanzania) to shed new light on the role that savings groups play in helping households cope with climate-related shocks. Drawing on new data, we show that approximately one-quarter of households have at least one member in a group, and that these households recover from flood events faster than those who do not. We further argue that the structure of savings groups allows for considerable group oversight, reducing the high costs of monitoring and sanctioning that often undermine cooperative engagement in urban areas. This makes the savings group model a uniquely flexible form of financing that is well adapted to helping households cope with shocks such as repeated flooding. In addition to this, we posit that they may provide a foundation for community initiatives focusing on preventative action.

Type: Article
Title: Saving Up for a Rainy Day? Savings Groups and Resilience to Flooding in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1007/s12132-021-09424-w
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12132-021-09424-w
Language: English
Additional information: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made.
Keywords: Savings groups; Floods; Dar es Salaam; Resilience; Recovery financing; Disaster prevention
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Development Planning Unit
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10126417
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