Anja Smith

I am an economist and development practitioner. My work has focused on the provision of research and technical capacity in the areas of financial inclusion and financial sector development, health economics and health systems analysis.

I am currently a researcher at Research on Socio-Economic Policy (ReSEP: at the Economics Department of Stellenbosch University and also engaged in independent consulting for Cenfri and Percept. I spent the first eight years of my career consulting in the area of access to financial services and financial inclusion, helping to establish the Centre for Financial Regulation and Inclusion ( in 2008. My time at Cenfri (an NGO) included organisational design and management, conducting research on various financial inclusion topics, as well as programme design and implementation on behalf of FinMark Trust. I returned to Stellenbosch University on a full-time basis in 2013 to pursue a PhD in Economics, graduating in 2016. My PhD focused on various topics related to the financing, delivery and user acceptability of healthcare in South Africa. My postdoctoral research examined questions related to the measurement of quality of healthcare and access to contraception and reproductive care for vulnerable women in South Africa. I am currently continuing with this research.

Fields of specialization

Gender & women’s empowerment, Health and nutrition, Impacts of government programs


Title Country Themes
The unintended consequences of the Malawi Farm Input Subsidy Programme (FISP) on women's agency Malawi Gender & women’s empowerment , Agriculture and food security


Dr Anja Smith
Stellenbosch University
Department of Economics

Contact information:

South Africa

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