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Sophia T. Anong

College of Family and Consumer Sciences

Financial Planning, Housing and Consumer Economics

Associate Professor

206 Charles Schwab Financial Planning Center
407 Sanford Dr.
Athens, GA 30602

129 Stuckey Building UGA Griffin Campus
1109 Experiment Street

Griffin, GA 30223



Degree Field of Study Institution Graduation
Ph.D. Family and Consumer Economics Purdue University 2006
M.S. Agricultural Economics Purdue University 2003
B.S. Agriculture & Natural Resources Africa University, Zimbabwe 1997


  • Mobile money and digitized services in African countries.
  • Consumer complaint handling and redress in African digital markets
  • Fintech and digital divide for low-income, minorities, unbanked, and other vulnerable groups 

Contactless payments and the payment divide

Recent funding: Facebook

Prior Professional Positions

Organization Title Years of Service
University of Georgia Assistant/Associate Professor 2010-present
Virginia Tech Assistant Professor 2006-10


Award Name Awarded By Year Awarded
Faculty Seed Grant in the Sciences Office of Research, UGA 2020
Global Research Collaboration Grant Office of Research, Office of Global Engagement, UGA 2019
Undergraduate Academic Advisor Award College of Family and Consumer Sciences, UGA 2015
Sarah H. Moss Fellowship - Cameroon Center for Teaching and Learning, UGA 2014
Sarah H. Moss Fellowship - Zimbabwe Center for Teaching and Learning, UGA 2012
Dissertation Award Western Family Economics Association, USA 2007

Editorial Appointments

Position Name of Journal Year(s)
Associate Editor Family and Consumer Sciences Research Journal 2018-


Organization Title Year(s) Service Type
Georgia Association of Family & Consumer Sciences Board member 2020- Student Unit Advisor
American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences Awards Chair 2019- Family Economics & Resource Management community
Georgia Association of Family & Consumer Sciences Board member 2015-17 Resource Development
American Council on Consumer Interests Board member 2015-17 Membership and Marketing


Public Storage launches contactless move-ins for peace of mind

Mobile financial apps won't do the work for you

Contactless payments surge during COVID-19


Fintech and Financial Inclusion (Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta)

UGA Focus on Faculty

Advisory Committee

Graduate Chair:

  1. Aditi Routh
  2. Judith Aboagye, Sophia Anong, Provider and Consumer Perceptions on Mobile Money and Microfinance Integrations in Ghana: A Financial Inclusion Approach, International Journal of Business and Economics Research. Special Issue: Microfinance and Local Development. Vol. 9, No. 4, 2020, pp. 276-297. 2017 University of Georgia Graduate School Interdisciplinary & Innovative Research Grant; 2017 Emerging Scholar - American Association of Family & Consumer Sciences.
  3. Zhao, H., Anong, S.T. and Zhang, L. (2019), Understanding the impact of financial incentives on NFC mobile payment adoption: An experimental analysis, International Journal of Bank Marketing, Vol. 37 No. 5, pp. 1296-13122016 Award from the Jan M. Hathcote Social Science Academic Support Fund.
  4. Chalise, L., & Anong, S. (2017). Spending Behavior Change and Financial Distress during the Great Recession. Journal of Financial Counseling and Planning, 28(1), 49.

Undergaduate Research:

  1. Contactless Payments lab
  2. Keane Swenson, B.S. Economics, Statistics minor. Mobile Financial Services and Healthcare Utilization in Zimbabwe, 2020 FINRA Undergraduate Student competition award, Presented at the 2020 annual meeting of the American Council on Consumer Interests and 2020 UGA CURO symposium.
  3. Rajashri Manjanuth, B.S. Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, Sociology minor. Socioeconomic Disparities in Mental Health and Financial Strain (CDC- National Health Interview Survey). 2018 FINRA Undergraduate Student competition winner, Presented at the 2018 annual meeting of the American Council on Consumer Interests.

Current Classes

Intro to Personal Finance (online),  Wealth Management I, Comprehensive Financial Planning

Current Research

I am working on a randomized evaluation of increasing the number of female mobile money agents in rural Ghana. Expected outcomes include increased overall agency for women personally, in shared households, and in their communities, increased consumer agency, and a decrease in fraud which has been found to be highest among female agent to female customer interactions. 

I also lead two projects that study the accelerated adoption of contactless payments during the pandemic. In one project, our multidisciplinary team surveys U.S. consumers and small business owners and also incorporates discrete payment choice experiments with both groups. The purpose is to detect digital and payment divides, attitudes, and linkages with localized factors such as payment infrastructure, COVID-19 infection rates, and reopening guidelines. Developments with federally-approved COVID-19 drug treatments or vaccine as well as with two pending bills, the Payment Choice Act and the Touchless Transactions Act, are also considered. The other project is an intervention with small businesses in the state of Georgia. This is a randomized evaluation that examines effects of offering rewards and tailored information on new adoptions or expansions of remote or in-store contactless payment systems. The two payment bills are also implemented hypothetically and evaluated. The study oversamples ethnic minority owners and those in lower-income or rural locations.


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