عنوان مقاله [English]
نویسندگان [English]چکیده [English]
Assessing the impact of microfinance programs helps to improve the procedures and performance of ongoing activities and to formulate better initiatives in future. In this article, we provide case studies of two microfinance programs in Iran. We assess the impact of these programs on participating households in terms of financial aspects of poverty, vulnerability, and women’s empowerment. Our field study has benefited from a set of qualitative and quantitative techniques. In our quantitative survey of households we have used new program participants as the control group. Our qualitative techniques have been primarily used to complement and add nuance to our quantitative survey results. Participation in either program has not improved incomes, assets, or expenditures on food and clothing among households. It has ,however, resulted in the diversification of participating households’ income sources. Furthermore, the programs have empowered women when women have had direct control over the received credit. Finally, in some cases programs have actually increased the vulnerability of certain households.