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Mya Win ’04: Women’s World Banking (WWB)
Mya Win received a summer fellowship to work with WWB, a network of microfinance organizations whose mission is to expand low income women’s economic participation and power by opening access to finance, information and markets. WWB supports its affiliates, who offer direct services to low income women, with financial products and services (FPS), strategy and technical services, and by fostering learning among its network. “My project finance experience in investment banking and first hand knowledge of developing countries led to my interest in microfinance,” she says.
Win worked with the FPS team on various equity and debt projects. Her responsibilities included analyzing the current state of financial markets in India (debt, equity, securitization, new banking regulations), expanding the equity database on regulated microfinance institutions to assess and benchmark performance, and conducting a survey of the major lenders to microfinance institutions.
“The analysis that I performed helped WWB to address issues such as the social impact of commercialization,” she says. “For example, microfinance aims to support the local entrepreneurial community, and one metric of mission drift is whether average loan size as a percentage of per capita GDP has increased.”
“Supporting private sector investment in the developing world in order to promote sustainable growth is crucial to alleviating poverty,” says Win, “My experience at WWB helped to confirm my belief that microfinance is a very important tool to support low-income women, who are often overlooked in international development policy-making and projects.”