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Certified Expert in Financial Inclusion Policy

The significant contribution that financial inclusion can make to achieving inclusive economic growth and the Sustainable Development Goals has gained global recognition.

This course will provide you with relevant knowledge on the following key financial inclusion policy areas – proportionate application of global standards, consumer protection, the digital route to financial inclusion, national strategies, measuring impact of financial inclusion.

The course will help develop skills to develop and analyse policies and design strategies to implement them with a special focus on developing countries.

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This online training is developed and implemented as joint initiative between Frankfurt School of Finance & Management and the Alliance for Financial Inclusion (AFI). You will benefit from world class education experience of a top-ranked business school, combined with the expertise from the world`s leading organization for financial inclusion policymakers.

What Do We Offer?

  • An interactive e-learning course including video lectures, PDF scripts, examples, practical exercises, online tests and case studies.
  • A discussion forum for course related issues as well as for exchange of opinions and experiences with , tutors, peers or the FSDF e-Campus team.
  • Personalized support from your e-Campus team.
  • The possibility to achieve a Frankfurt School certificate after passing the final exam or a confirmation of course completion after completing the course.

Tuition Fees*

Regular Tuition Fee:  EUR 1,550

Early Bird Fee: EUR 1,350 (by July 15)

  • The staff of the paid up AFI member institutions are eligible for discount of Euro 300. Please contact AFI for further details on the discount, if required.
  • 10% group discount (for 2 or more participants working for the same institution, informed to us before by an email)
  • 10% for FS Alumni
  • for additional company package, please contact us.
Payment Options
  • Bank Transfer (bank fees to be covered by the participants)
  • Credit Card
  • PayPal

Payment in instalments is not possible.

*subject to change

Target Audience

Financial regulators, management and staff of financial service providers, both banks and non-banks, who are either working on developing regulations pertaining to financial inclusion or need to be aware of the regulatory aspects to help design and deliver financial services that promote financial inclusion. Consultants, professionals and students from the financial inclusion domain will also benefit from the course by understanding the strategic and regulatory framework that promotes financial inclusion.  


The course takes approx. 6 months assuming 3-4 hours of self-study per week. It consists of 7 mandatory units. The units need to be completed in a sequence. The next unit opens only if you complete the online test of the previous unit.


Course Start Course End Registration Early Bird
Sept. 1 Feb. 29 Jun. 1 - Sept. 30  By Jul. 15
Mar. 1 Aug. 31 Dec. 1 - Mar. 31 By Jan. 15


Registrations for the September intake will open on 1st June. Get notified by registering for our newsletter.

Course Content*

This course provides a broad understanding of the designing and implementation of financial regulatory frameworks. It covers in detail the following financial inclusion policy areas – proportionate application of global standards, consumer education and empowerment, national strategies that ensure a coordinate approach to financial inclusion, measuring impact of financial inclusion. It also focuses on three core components that drive financial inclusion – financing of micro, small and medium enterprises, microfinance and microinsurance and taking the digital route to financial inclusion. 

Unit 1

Aligning the Goals of Financial Inclusion, Integrity, and Stability

This introductory session provides you a broad understanding of the designing and implementation of regulatory frameworks for financial inclusion. The objective of this unit is to appreciate the importance of the relationship between financial inclusion and the core mandate of financial regulators to safeguard financial stability and integrity. The unit shares the role of the various global standard setting bodies (SSBs) in enhancing financial inclusion.

The unit also presents the challenges of implementing a proportionate policy and regulatory approach at the country level which achieves an effective balance between the three pillars of inclusion, integrity and stability. Technology has great potential to positively impact financial inclusion. The unit discusses different kinds of RegTech and FinTech and their growth in controlled environments such as the Regulatory Sandboxes.

Unit 2

Measuring Financial Inclusion

The impact of financial inclusion is significantly reduced in the absence of a framework that measures financial inclusion. This unit is very critical as it describes the role of quality data in developing financial inclusion policies and the indicators which help measuring financial inclusion. It discusses in detail both demand and supply side data, qualitative and quantitative data and the use of global and national level data and how they contribute to policy making and lead to result based monitoring and evaluation of financial inclusion. This is a core component of any national strategy on financial inclusion.

Unit 3

Digital Financial Services

The role of digital financial services in promoting financial inclusion is significant and it is inevitable that all concerned stakeholders of financial inclusion would opt the digital route in the future. The last unit of this course thus focuses on how the digital medium is relevant for the discussions in the previous units. The unit starts with basic terminologies to ensure an agreed understanding. It shares international examples to showcase the potential of DFS. It highlights the DFS ecosystem and its stakeholders and highlights the regulatory aspects that are required to ensure a coordinated approach among the diverse stakeholders of the DFS ecosystem.

Unit 4

Consumer Empowerment and Market Conduct

This unit focuses on the other end of the continuum – the consumers. Financial inclusion ensures that many first-time end users join the formal financial system and thus it is important that they are educated to be able to make the best use of the services and to be protected. This unit will help to develop a clear understanding of issues and good practices in consumer empowerment and will help to develop skills to be able to design, improve, review regulatory and/or institutional policies related to market conduct and supervision practices.  

Unit 5

MSME Finance

Promoting MSME provides a channel to assist people from the lower income population to increase their income, to be financially active and included. Given the significant contribution of MSME to enhancing financial inclusion, this unit provides participants the understanding of the issues in access to finance for MSMEs and the possible regulatory solutions. It discusses the debate on defining MSMEs in a country context, the need for product diversity and the elements of a supportive financial infrastructure to enhance access to finance for MSME. Given the critical role of women in MSME, it highlights country examples which have excelled in women led MSME initiatives. 

Unit 6

Microcredit, Microsavings and Microinsurance

Unit 6 illustrates the alternative financial inclusion products and policies that play a main role in providing access to finance to the low-income population. A right mix of financial products is key to effective financial inclusion and thus the unit presents the microfinance products: microsavings, microcredit and microinsurance. The unit focusses on the need for effective, affordable, diverse products and services  for the low income to benefit the most from them. The unit also discusses the regulations that guide these alternative products and delivery channels.

Unit 7

National Financial Inclusion Strategies

There is empirical evidence that financial inclusion is higher in countries that have a documented financial inclusion strategy. This unit presents the need for a financial inclusion strategy to design a comprehensive and coordinated approach which connects the financial inclusion continuum described in the previous units – from the financial regulators to the consumers. It presents a step by step guide to develop a strategy, including how to monitor the implementation and progress made.  

Training Approach

The flexibility of our courses offers you the opportunity to follow you own schedule and to combine daily work with professional development.

The highest quality offered will immediately improve your daily job performance as well as the performance of your institution.

Training Material

Video Lectures

  • Introvideos: After viewing the lectures, participants will have a basic understanding of each topic and will be able to classify importance and relevance of different techniques and aspects in a broader context.
  • Web-based Presentations: Web based presentation complement the scripts and give additional input on important topics.

Online Tests

Each unit ends with an online test comprising a set of 10 - 15 multiple choice questions. Only after having successfully completed an online test you will gain access to the next unit.

Reading Material

A PDF script is for most of our courses the main studying material. This reading material provides basic concepts and principles applicable to the subject of each unit.


The key to successful learning is the immediate use of newly acquired knowledge and the transfer of theory into practice. Our online courses are therefore supplemented by mandatory assignments.

Discussion Forum

A course discussion forum enables the interaction between participants and trainers and facilitates the exchange of experiences as well as possibilities to ask questions or get clarifications.

Suggestions & Recommendations

While you decide on the timing and pace of your learning experience we would like to give you some recommendations on how to get the most out of this course:

Your schedule: We will provide you a course schedule including voluntary and mandatory deadlines. The course schedule serves as guideline for your personal learning schedule and will help you completing the programme within the given time frame.

Exercises: Even though the exercises in the script are not mandatory we strongly advise you to use them as an opportunity to check your knowledge and to prepare for the final exam.

Assignments: With the assignments you will learn how to apply the knowledge learned during the course. It is important that you take time to read the necessary material and to solve the assignment.

Networking Opportunities: Use the forum to introduce yourself your peers and start interesting discussions.

Final Exam

Passing a final examination is a requirement for obtaining your certificate.

  • Location: The final exam takes place online
  • Duration: The final exam takes 2 hours.
  • Costs:  An additional final exam fee will be charged for the second and third final exam attempt.
  • Certificate: Your digital certificate will be available upon passing the final examination.

If you do not wish to take the final exam, you will receive a confirmation of course participation after completing the course.

Course Tutor: Ricardo Estrada

Ricardo Estrada

Ricardo has been the tutor for the Certified Expert in Financial Inclusion Policy course at Frankfurt School for a number of years. He also works with the financial regulation institution in his home country Guatemala, where he leads a regulations team that is mainly in charge of risk management and financial inclusion projects, among other regulatory topics. In such capacity, he is currently also leading his country’s NFIS Technical Implementation Committee.

FS-AFI Collaboration

The Certified Expert in Financial Inclusion Policy e-learning course is a joint collaboration of Alliance for Financial Inclusion ( and Frankfurt School. The development of this e-learning course was funded by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ).

AFI – Alliance for Financial Inclusion

AFI is a unique member owned network of regulators from over 90 countries working together to accelerate the adoption of proven and innovative financial inclusion policy solutions with the ultimate aim of making financial services more accessible to the world’s unbanked. It is based on the idea that
a global knowledge exchange platform is key to expanding and improving financial inclusion policy. Thus, the collaboration brings together Frankfurt School, one of the top business schools in Europe, and AFI the world’s leading organization on financial inclusion policy and regulation.

As a network organisation, capacity building of its members – which in turn contributes to the growth of the network and the sector – is a key objective of AFI. Capacity building initiatives include member trainings, knowledge exchange visits, peer learning. These have been very well attended and the demand has been increasing significantly for advanced training on these topics and also to induct more members and other stakeholders into financial inclusion policy.

An online version in partnership with Frankfurt School is expected to bridge this gap by reaching out to a larger audience. This will also contribute to the growth of the sector to which we are committed.

Course contributes to UN SDGs

All our courses contribute to the following SDGs


This course will enhance your knowledge in the following SDGs. Frankfurt School's Sustainable World Academy offers professional and executive courses dedicated to the advancement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).


Beyond your Certificate

Master of Leadership in Sustainable Finance

The Certified Expert in Financial Inclusion Policy is an Elective Module of the Master of Leadership in Sustainable Finance. Join our Master programme after completing the CEFI course and waive one elective module. Also, the amount you paid for the course will be deducted from the final tuition fee of the Master programme. Additionally, you will benefit from an alumni discount.

Frankfurt School Summer Academy

Our Summer Academy is designed to provide tangible take-home value: what you learn with us in Frankfurt, you can apply straight away in your own organisation. More than 1,000 participants over 20 years can’t be wrong – our trainings are cutting edge, delivered by leading experts in their field.  Yet, most important for the great success of our Summer Academies is the profile of the participants. You bring the regional expertisediversity of backgrounds and the unique practitioner’s perspective. Learning from each other is an integral part of our training philosophy. This is your opportunity to stretch your network all around the globe.

Diploma in Financial Inclusion

The Certified Expert in Financial Inclusion Policy is part of the curriculum of our Diploma in Financial Inclusion. Enroll to our Diploma after completing the CEFI course and waive one module. Also, the amount you paid for the course will be deducted from the final tuition fee of the Diploma. Additionallly, you will benefit from our alumni discount. 

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