HISAAB: Grassroots Micro-Finance Management Software
An Experiment in Numeric Interfaces

HISAAB is group-level micro-finance management software, intended to document transactions at the lowest level of MFI operations. In this project we will explore the interface design space for illiterate and uneducated users, the typical users at the group-level of MFI operations. We will explore a variety of interface design paradigms to test accessibility to such a user domain. One novel design paradigm is the idea of numeric interfaces, leveraging users' ability to remember, manipulate and enter numbers. We expect the results obtained here to be applicable in other application areas - such as e-government, information dissemination, rural micro-enterprise, etc. Further, documenting and analyzing the performance of micro-finance instruments is becoming an increasingly important and strenuous task, especially given Indian accounting regulations, the volume of transactions at the lowest level of MFI operations, and the increasing accountability requirements of funding agencies and investors. We hope to demonstrate the benefits of electronically documenting group-level transactions within this process.

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