Independent Research and Policy Advocacy

Natasha D’cruze Dvara

Natasha D’cruze

Research Associate
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Natasha D’cruze is a Research Associate with Household Finance Research Initiative. She has a Master’s in Development Economics from SOAS, University of London, and an undergraduate degree in Economics from Delhi University. 

She has worked as an action researcher on the digital and Aadhaar-based delivery mechanism of social welfare schemes in Jharkhand, where she did field research and collaborated with civil society organisations and village communities to help advocate for better local accountability. Natasha is interested in learning how to strengthen Universal Healthcare delivery in India and has worked on the ground level to study the PMJAY in Jharkhand.

She has explored topics in evaluating development through the Capability Approach lens during her engagement with the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI).  She has also taken part in a project concerning the hurdles in accessing the Last-Mile Delivery of NREGA payments and its impact on financial inclusion measures for poor households.

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April 10, 2024 | Dvara Research

The 2016 Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) is a landmark legislation with the potential to impact every borrower. This paper focuses on Part III of the IBC, which deals with natural persons, proprietorships, and personal guarantors for corporate debt. Through the paper, we attempt to estimate the potential consequences of the Fresh Start Process (FSP) defined under this Part. The IBC lays out economic criteria that can qualify (or disqualify) an applicant for FSP. Under FSP, a borrower must be asset-lite, have a low income, and hold minimal outstanding debt to qualify. These thresholds determine the applicability of the process once the IBC is fully notified. Thus, empirical estimates regarding the effects of the provisions on the Indian credit market are crucial to deciphering the impact of the IBC, more specifically, the FSP.

April 4, 2024 | Dvara Research

This article explores the significance of financial inclusion in determining the financial well-being of Indian households. It discusses a measurement framework developed by Dvara Research and xKDR Forum, focusing on access to and usage of financial products, and financial well-being. Our results from collaborative research with financial service providers shed light on the framework's applicability and its relationship with improved financial outcomes.

March 21, 2024 | Dvara Research

Business correspondent (BC) agents are crucial last-mile infrastructure that support India’s vision for efficient, population-scale delivery of financial and other government services using Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI). These agents primarily facilitate cash deposits, cash withdrawals (together known as cash-in cash-out or CICO), and optionally facilitate access to insurance, savings products, and various welfare schemes for rural and low-income India.

February 1, 2024 | Dvara Research

There is consensus about the importance of financial inclusion. This has translated into efforts to increase the level of financial access from the financial sector firms as well as through policy initiatives. Among the financial sector initiatives, the most visible has been the growth of the FinTech platforms.

By Natasha D’cruze, Misha Sharma, Susan Thomas, Geetika Palta
April 11, 2023 | Dvara Research

In this blog, we focus on the supply side of the equation, exploring the literature detailing the issues CICO agents face in offering uninterrupted CICO services. Agents who provide CICO services often encounter significant obstacles that hinder their capacity to assist customers effectively.

February 13, 2023 | Dvara Research

Despite significant policy support for financial inclusion, there is little evidence about what has been achieved by way of knowing which households and individuals are financially included, or what is the impact of such inclusion on these persons.

By Natasha D’cruze, Dr. Indradeep Ghosh, Geetika Palta, Misha Sharma, Susan Thomas
January 30, 2023 | ThePrint

Low-income households seek loans often, but credit is suitable if it helps sustain or improve financial well-being. This is what must be ensured by lenders, regulators & policymakers.

By Natasha D’cruze, Rakshith S. Ponnathpur
November 3, 2021 | The Hindu Business Line

It is an important tool for agrarian families to manage and mitigate their risks

May 27, 2021 | Dvara Research

As part of the 5th Dvara Research Conference on Household Finance primer series, in this post we discuss the theme ‘Household Portfolios’