Delivering Index-Based Livestock Insurance through ICT
Delivering Index-Based Livestock
Insurance through ICT
Andrew Mude and Amos Gichamba
ICT4ag International Conference, Kigali, Rwanda
4-8 November 2013
The Index Based Livestock Insurance (IBLI)
• IBLI is an award-winning program helping pastoralists of N. Kenya
and S. Ethiopia manage the key source of vulnerability they face:
drought-related livestock mortality (www.ilri.org/ibli)
• Index Based Insurance is a new innovation in insurance the avoids
the problems that make traditional insurance unprofitable for small,
• The IBLI program commenced with a pilot in Marsabit district in
January 2010 and is now offered in 3 counties in Northern Kenya
and the Borana Zone of Southern Ethiopia.
• The deployment of the project involved ILRI as the overall
coordinator, and the insurance companies. The local government,
religious organizations and different opinion leaders were also
involved in mobilization and awareness campaigns.
ICT Value Addition to IBLI
• The target areas for IBLI – where pastoralists, the key beneficiaries
reside – is remote, infrastructure deficient and sparsely populated.
• In such a context, the provision of a sufficient number of sales
touch points, as well as delivering relevant program information
and extension messaging is a very costly proposition.
• ICT infrastructure acts as an enabler in this project, providing a costeffective sales transaction and information sharing and
management platform for this project.
• A relatively high penetration of mobile technology among the
• Involvement of all the stakeholders during the design and
development of the software.
• The simplicity in design for the mobile and web platforms
• Choice of language in the platform. E.g. SMS communication in
• Actual tests of the platform by all stakeholders and on the ground
before the commencement of insurance sale period
• Poor mobile network coverage in some regions where the project is
• Expiry of SMS validity period when the pastoralist is out of network
for a long period
• Shared cost of mobile device being a bit high for most people in the
project target areas
• Mobile devices running out of charge where the agent has to travel
for a long distance to get a power source to charge their phone.
• Some users opting to use manual ways on the ground instead of
• While functionality and execution can improve, the M-IBLI
ICT infrastructure drastically reduces the cost of several key
service items critical to the sustainability of IBLI provision
• Inclusion of value addition features on the ICT platform e.g.
broadcast information from agricultural officers, connecting
farmers with agrovet firms and veterinaries through the
• The current challenge has been data submission for regions
with poor or no mobile network but with mobile network
coverage rapidly spreading across the country, the value of
the system should increase considerably.