Two researchers from Philippines, Alvin Ang and Jeremiah Opiniano were awarded the first prize for the Japanese Award for Outstanding Research on Development in 2011 with a grant to develop the Remittance Investment Climate Analysis in Rural Hometowns (RICART), research tool covering two municipalities in the Philippines. The tool aimed to determine the relationship between remittances and investing and doing business in rural hometowns in Philippines.
The findings from the data were presented in hometown conferences, especially the research participants comprising of overseas migrants and migrant families and local municipal officials where the research findings were validated and welcomed by the community. Following this the findings of the study were presented at a meeting of an interagency, multi-stakeholder council called the Remittance for Development Council (ReDC) that convenes government, business and civil society organizations to discuss issues surrounding remittances from abroad who found the methodology interesting. This led to the Chair Secretary of the Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO) to recommend RICART as a tool to a cluster of government agencies called the Human Development and Poverty Reduction Cluster as a possible method for research related to poverty.
Subsequently, the RICART tool has been scaled up across Philippines and beyond. It has caught the interest of donors for successive rounds covering a municipality in Bulacan province with the support of an anonymous donor from Europe. The third round of the study is being supported by the Institute for Money, Technology and Financial Inclusion (IMTFI) of the University of California-Irvine as well as the fourth round, using a more challenging methodology that will be implemented in the Philippines and Tajiskistan by the JICA Research Institute. The GDN funded study has been presented in several international conferences including Forum on Promoting Remittances for Development Finance held by the Asian Development Bank in March 2015.
Project: The Japanese Award for Outstanding Research on Development (Philippines 2011 -2013)
Research: Remittance Investment Climate Analysis in Rural Hometowns (RICART): Piloting a tool on rural hometown investing by overseas migrants
Grantees: Alvin Ang and Jeremiah Opiniano