Student Microfinance & Development Initiative

Changemaker: Michael Lok


SMDI is the development think tank at the world’s leading universities.

The aims of the project are to add value to the work of international organizations, microfinance institutions (MFIs), social enterprises, other organizations and the general public by giving students the chance to use their skills, time and committment to the cause of international development.

One of the first endeavours of the organization was the co-creation and leadership of a social business innovation course with the LSE Department of Management starting in October 2009 at the LSE. The course Masters’ students then went on developing their own social business ideas.

In the first years of its existence SMDI has been working with its fellows on various services, including publications, events, research and other projects for development organizations and the poor.

SMDI Fellows are studying at the world’s leading universities including the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), the University of Oxford, the University of Warwick, King’s College London, University College London (UCL), McGill University, Georgetown University, Macalester College and others.

SMDI is and will always remain a student-led charitable organisation and charity working with, for and through students to incubate development.


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