Baseline data collection has been ongoing since mid-October 2016 through a face-to-face survey with the use of tablets. At the end of the survey, individuals are randomly assigned to one of the 5 app-based treatment groups or to the control group. If they agree to answering the survey, they receive an incentive through cell phone minutes. The treatments are as follows:
#1: receive a short message on screen of the tablet reminding the importance of saving (control group).
#2: treatment is the same message as #1 including a monthly SMS reminder for a maximum period of six months (this period applies to every case a SMS is offered).
#3: the tablet will automatically calculate how much money the individual is currently saving based on income and spending data. The participant will use this as a reference to build a (flow) goal. The surveyor will include and show this goal on screen to the treated individual.
#4: same treatment as #3, including a monthly SMS reminding they can save their monthly goal.
#5: individuals shall pick a good or service of their interest (product, housing, holiday, etc) and declare how much they would be willing to save in order to contribute to its future purchase. Participants will also be offered to receive a monthly SMS reminding to save $X for Y good/service.
#6: app will calculate the individual’s need for buffer stock savings, depending on unforeseen income or expense variations declared in the baseline survey. A SMS will also be sent reminding to save $X to avoid income/expense shocks.
Starting in April 2017 a pilot will be carried out.