Project • Ongoing

Improving user journeys for humanitarian cash transfers

Humanitarian agencies today increasingly deliver cash to affected people. The variety of systems and mechanisms used to transfer money is growing. From digital payment systems (like mobile money accounts, prepaid or smart cards, and electronic vouchers) to more traditional methods of delivering funds (through agents, informal networks, or over the counter), there is still much to be learned about how well these systems are able to meet recipients’ needs and to satisfy their preferences.

Funded by the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID), our research in Kenya and Iraq contributes to a more holistic understanding of how cash transfer programmes and their underlying features are perceived by recipients. In collaboration with experts from the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) and Oxfam, we combine quantitative perception surveys with qualitative analyses of individual user journeys. A thorough understanding of these journeys – including recipients’ preferences, expectations, and satisfaction levels at various points of interaction with individual cash programmes – helps donors fund context-appropriate and effective delivery mechanisms while providing aid agencies with the tools to improve the design of their programmes.

In December 2017, we surveyed just over 260 cash recipients and conducted a series of in-depth user journey interviews in Kenya’s Turkana and Nairobi counties. The resulting personas and user journeys were presented and discussed with relevant stakeholders at a workshop in Nairobi to make sense of the collected information and co-create solutions and recommendations. A brief teaser of the workshop and interviews is available below.

A report documenting these user journeys is available here

We are currently implementing the second case study in Iraq. By December, we will produce guidance for donors and agency field staff along with presentations and an additional video summarising the main findings.