Using Mobile Biometrics and Management Information Systems to Enhance Quality and Accountability of Cash transfer in a Girls’ Empowerment Program in Rural and Urban Poor Settings

Information and Communication Technology for social protection (ICT4SP) has improved the targeting and identification of beneficiaries, while mitigating benefit fraud within the delivery of safety net and Conditional cash transfer (CCT) programs. However, poor telecommunication and power infrastructure hamper the implementation of ICT tools in low resourced and hard to reach environments. In this paper we describe how we used a mobile biometric fingerprint identification and a management information system within a randomized control trial design program to identify girls in an urban slum environment and remote arid rural area; and discuss contextual strengths and challenges encountered. Use of mobile biometrics and management information system enhanced the quality and accountability of the CCT program. The mobile biometrics system ensured accurate identification of participants, while the MIS enabled increased accountability and efficiency in the disbursement of benefits. The paper also reports challenges experienced that needed multifaceted approaches.