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Overcoming financial exclusion: Community Development Finance Institutions (CDFIs) and the balancing of financial and social objectives

Appleyard, Lindsey Jemma (2008)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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Abstract

This thesis explores Community Development Finance Institutions (CDFI) as an alternative vehicle for the supply of debt finance to financially excluded enterprises. CDFIs are part of a broader approach to addressing financial exclusion that is experienced by commercial and social enterprises in the US and UK. The thesis explores US and UK CDFI lending processes to develop an understanding of how financial and social objectives are balanced in the lending process and the ways in which CDFIs become embedded in local financial and business support networks. The analysis is based upon detailed comparative research of CDFIs located in the US and the UK; interviews were undertaken with CDFIs, their clients and a quantitative analysis of a CDFIs loan portfolio was undertaken. The research concludes that CDFIs are complex dynamic organizations as they have to balance a double or triple bottom line which has the potential to undermine the firm’s long term survival or mission. The danger is that over time a CDFI will reduce its exposure to risk and become more like a mainstream bank. The tensions with the CDFI business model implies that they will only ever provide a partial solution to the enterprise finance gap.

Type of Work:Ph.D. thesis.
School/Faculty:Schools (1998 to 2008) > School of Geography, Earth & Environmental Sciences
Department:Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
Subjects:G Geography (General)
HG Finance
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:386
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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