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Mark Walsh

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Graduate Student Fellowship | 2022 - 2023 Academic Year

How do Social Concerns Influence Technology Adoption?: Evidence from Digital Financial Services in Pakistan and Tanzania

Education and Skills
Work, Entrepreneurship, and Finance

From the Industrial Revolution to the Green Revolution, the diffusion of new technologies has been critical to global poverty reduction. Conversations between peers is a primary driver of learning about new technologies. However, recent research suggests that low-and-middle-income country households withhold useful information about new technologies. In my dissertation, I explore the extent to which social concerns drive this reticence and whether interventions targeting social concerns can improve community-level learning. Preliminary evidence from Pakistan suggests that social concerns impede information-sharing about new technologies, but that targeted interventions can alleviate these pressures and spur technology diffusion.

Mark Walsh, Graduate School of Education, Social Sciences, Humanities, and Interdisciplinary Policy Studies in Education (SHIPS)

mark walsh

Mark Walsh is a PhD candidate in the Economics Department and a Koret Fellow at Stanford University. Prior to starting his PhD, Walsh received a BA in Economics and an MA in Public Policy, with a focus on international development, from Stanford University, and worked as a research assistant at the Abdul-Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (JPAL). While working for JPAL in Ghana, Walsh and his collaborators became interested in early childhood education and began two field projects aimed at improving the quality of early childhood education in Ghana. Since coming to Stanford, his primary research focus has been digital finance in low and middle-income countries. His projects aim to enable those living in poverty to take advantage of the opportunities presented by digital finance. To this end, Walsh is studying digital job platforms in India, digital merchant payments in Tanzania, and mobile banking platforms in Pakistan.

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