The Impact of Peer Lending on Women Borrowing for Enterprise: Meeting the Entrepreneurship and Microfinance Challenge

How does microcredit encourage the growth of female entrepreneurship?
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This paper describes a project that examines the role of peer lending in the UK and its impact on women who borrow for enterprise. Statistics show that there is a gender pay gap in the country as a large number of women opt for lower paid, part-time work to balance family commitments.In the UK, peer lending providers offer finance to potential entrepreneurs who are unable to access traditional bank finance. The objectives of this project include:

  • Researching the gender pay gap;
  • Determining if and why women are attracted to peer lending;
  • Exploring perceived benefits and barriers;
  • Defining the social impacts of peer lending;
  • Examining the added value it offers;
  • Understanding how and why peer lending can be developed in future.

The study shows that peer lending plays an important social role in supporting women back to employment. However, MFIs need to develop alternative ways of increasing income, since it is difficult to achieve operational sustainability given the small size of loans.

About this Publication

By Flemons, J.