Reaching the Masses through a Rural Services Platform

The richness of interaction technologies used by a consumer or moderated by a facilitator for the consumer lays an important role in adoption of financial, advisory and business services by a rural populace. Rural ICT initiatives undertaken so far have focused on device-level technologies that bring in a single service to the consumer. In this paper, we present the architecture and implementation of a Rural Services Platform which is not only a low cost shared model, but also brings in innovation in an end-to-end solution while touching the next billion population. We describe our work in the context of social transfers by Government of India like NREGA payments and also present the architecture of a solution which can be used by 1) Business Correspondents who go into the remote villages to disburse payments 2) consumers directly, who can through a voice channel conduct their transactions of money transfers. Our solution can be used to provide an array of services across industries like banking, finance, agriculture, health-care and education to the end user, thereby not only reducing the cost of delivery, but also making the entire innovation scalable.

By: Vikas Agarwal, Sachin Gupta, Shalini Kapoor, Sumit Mittal

Published in: RI11017 in 2011


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