Note: the publications may take a little while to load.... please be patient.

You can read all 29 of our publications directly on screen, or print or download them. They are presented by date of writing, with the most recent first.

'Not Just Debtors'. Our diarists give as well as take loans and in this blog we look at how much they do so, how, and why.



See it on the Manchester University Global Development Institute website here


Lending as well as borrowing.docx

'Education and Occupations' looks at the relationship between school grades reached by the various generations of a household, and the occupations followed by the household.



See it on the Manchester University Global Development Institute website

Education and Occupations.pdf

'Managing Money in a Growing Digital Economy' gives us a chance to ask the question, "how far are our diarists active participants in the global digital economy?"



This was the last piece written with UNCDF SHIFT. You can read it on their wensite here.

Managing Money in a Growing Digital Economy.pdf

The 'Tracking Transactions, Understanding Lives' series started in November 2018, and focuses on individual diarists, to provide a close-up sense of what it is like to live lives like theirs.

This third one is about a brick-breaker/faith-healer with a very volatile income stream. How does he manage it?


Read it on the Global Development Institute website

Tracking Transactions, Understanding Lives, How to Manage Volatile Income.pdf

Something to Fall Back On looks at the reserves held by our diarists

It was written in January 2019 and uses our transaction data and also our annual surveys on the balances that our diarists hold at banks, MFIs and insurance companies





Something to fall back on.pdf

This is the second of the 'Tracking Transactions, Understanding Lives' series.

This one is about a sari seller. At first it looks like a typical 'microcredit success' story. But a closer look reveals a more subtle reality.


Read it on the Global Development Institute website

Razaana Jan 2019.docx

'Mobile Money Behaviour in Bangladesh: Taking the National and Local Perspectives'

Written jointly with UNCDF, this blog compares the nationwide statistics about mobile-money usage with the experience of our diarists.


Read it on the UNCDF site here

Mobile money in Bangladesh- PDF.pdf

'Tracking Transactions, Understanding Lives' is a new series started in November 2018. The series focuses on individual diarists, to provide a close-up sense of what it is like to live lives like theirs.

This first one is about one of our poorest diarists, a widow who scrapes a living from odd jobs for market stall-holders.


Read it on the Global Development Institute website

Tracking Transactions, Understanding Lives.pdf

'Occupational Hazards: why do poor people settle for low-return jobs?'

Written in November 2018. Economists have been puzzled why it is that poor people don't seem as interested as they might be in using grants and loans to start small businesses. This blog looks at the reasons from our diarists' points of view.

Why do poor people settle for low-reward jobs.pdf

'Receiving Gifts in low-income households'

Written in September 2018, this blog looks at those diarists who receive money gifts as part of their income, and at the impact it makes



Read it on the Global Development Institute website

Gifts in Low-Income Households.pdf

'Getting to the Gulf'

This blog from mid-2018 tells the story of a young diarist from a poor background, showing the difficulties he had finding work, how he decided to try for a job overseas, and how he eventually made it to Saudi Arabia.



Read it on the Global Development Institute website

Getting to the Gulf.pdf

'Incomes and Pay Rates'

This is a slide presentation with audio, put together in mid 2018 and showing how incomes have risen and pay-rates have changed over the period of the diaries. It points out some of the winners and losers in the process, and shows how the losers try to compensate for their loss.

Note: you may need to download this file to hear the audio

Incomes and pay rates.pptx

'Bangladesh and education: doing well, could do better'

Written for MicroSave's 'Low Income Lives' series this blog was written in March 2018 and sums up what we have learnt about our diarists investments in education. It is mostly good news.

What do the poor spend on education.pdf

'Family Food Shopping'

This was written in February 2018 as the curtain raiser to MicroSave's 'Low Income Lives' blog series. As the title suggests, it looks at the patterns in domestic spending by our diarists.

Family Food Shopping.pdf

'Do low-income households invest?'

This blog was written in early 2018. MFIs (microfinance providers) always hoped that their loans would be invested by poor people in small businesses. Here we look at the reality as reflected in the investment decisions of our diarists.

Do low income households invest.pdf

'Follow that loan! What do people do with the loans they borrow from MFIs?

This slightly complex piece was written in late 2017 to show in some detail what our diarists have done with their MFI loans.




Follow that loan...!.pdf

'Poverty measurement using data from the Hrishipara daily Financial Diaries'

This somewhat technical piece reviews various ways of measuring poverty, showing in a very practical way what the daily diary data can contribute to the debate. It was written in November 2017.


Read it on the Global Development Institute website

Measuring poverty using daily diary data.pdf

'When poor households spend big' (part 2)

The second part, this one from October 2017 about how our diarists manage unusually large expenditures



Read it on the Global Development Institute website

When Poor Households Spend Big, part 2.pdf

'When poor households spend big' (part 1)

The first of a two-part blog, written in August 2017, about what happens when our diarists, though poor, need to find large sums for some reason or other


Read it on the Global Development Institute website


When Poor Households Spend Big, part 1.pdf

'What do the Hrishipara Daily Diaries tell us about DFS use in central Bangladesh'

This brief slide show from mid 2017 summarizes the degree to which our diarists use digital financial services (specifically through mobile phones) and what the uses are.

Read it on the Global Development Institute website

Note: this item has been superseded by a more recent UNCDF blog - see the entries for 2018, above

DFS and the Hrishipara Diaries.pptx

'What the poor spend on health care'

Written using diary data up to February 2017, this blog examines our diarists' records to see what kind of health expenditures they make and how they raise the necessary funds.


Read it on the Global Development Institute website

What the poor spend on health.pdf

'When Savings Aren’t Enough: How Low-Income Bangladeshis Use their Loans'

This is one of two looks we have had at our diarists's loan use - this being the simpler one. It was written in December 2016.



See it on the CGAP website here

When Savings Aren’t Enough - and you need to take a loan.pdf

'Tracking the savings of poor households'

This piece looks at the savings of of diarists, with a particular focus on the deposits they make in MFIs. It has some surprises. It was written in late 2016.



Read it on the Global Development Institute website

The poor and their savings.pdf

'How the poor borrow'

This blog was written in late 2016 to give a first account of the borrowing habits of our diarists.



Read it on the Global Development Institute website

How the poor borrow.pdf

'What do poor households spend their money on?'

Written in late 2016 this is one of our early 'overview' blogs, in which we look at and discuss the spending habits of our diarists.



Read it on the Global Development Institute website

What do poor households spend their money on.pdf

'Report to CGAP'

This is a mid-length Report of 32 pages, written in mid-2016, summing up what we learnt from daily diary research during the period when we were funded by CGAP (mid 2015 to mid 2016).

Its description of the diary methodology and environment is still relevant today.


Interim Report for CGAP mid 2016.pdf

'Daily Diaries Reveal Bangladesh's Shifting Financial Landscape'

This short blog was written with Wameek Noor of CGAP in mid 2016 just after we completed the phase of work that was funded by CGAP

Daily Diaries Reveal Bangladesh's Shifting Financial Landscape.pdf

'Report to CGAP: Farmers'

This short report was written in mid 2016 to support CGAP's contemporary work looking at small-holder financing

Interim Report on Farmers for CGAP mid 2016.pdf

'Financial Diaries: Fulfilling their Potential'

This is not an output of the diaries project. It is a discussion piece written with Guy Stuart of Microfinance Opportunities (MFO) for UNCDF. UNCDF supported a diaries project in Myanmar, and later funded the Hrishipara project between mid 2017 and mid 2018.

Financial Diaries Vision for UNCDF August 2013.pdf

We received funding help from CGAP in 2015-2016 and from the UNCDF's SHIFT programme in 2017-2019. We are now funding it ourselves.

If you would like to contribute, please contact me at write.ser@gmail.com