Case study

Improving informal working conditions through access to identity cards and health insurance

Jaipur Jewelry Artisan Development Project The Value Initiative Program in Jaipur, India

Mary McVay Sagar Adhikary


for market systems approaches

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Project implementer
Value Initiative Programs, Gates Foundation
Results level
Mixed method
Data source
Monitoring Data
Intervention type
Improved input supply

The study conveys the experiences of the Value Initiatives Program (VIP) in the jewellery artisan development sector in Jaipur, India. It includes an analysis of the project's impact and outreach, and identifies challenges in using this approach to improve conditions within the informal sector.

Main findings

  • Rapid increase noted in number of artisans who obtained identity cards and health insurance. Lower rejection rate of applications was also noted.
  • Designing the intervention and engaging all stakeholders helps to build buy-in and collaboration while reducing resistance.
  • It is important to consider informal sector workers as a viable consumer market yet there is a need for customised products and services.
  • Those artisan enterprises which accessed the programme services increased their income by USD 1,000 more than control group enterprises. Part of these financial benefits can be linked to the access to identity cards which helps access other government services, financial services and contracts.
  • Overall the VIP-India project facilitated the development of a sustainable market for identity cards and health insurance among informal workers.

Intervention description

The programme involved improving access to identity cards and health insurance for low-income artisans in the jewellery sector in Jaipur, India through partnerships with government, NGOs and private insurance companies. Its approach of using market-driven improvements in working and social conditions aimed to strengthen and grow the jewellery sector.

Evidence methodology

The project results are based on quantitative data collection on number of artisans who accessed identity cards and health insurance. The programme also involved using a control group to assess the income impact of all programme services.

Useful for:

Urban value chain interventions for improvement in working conditions, informal enterprise development projects.