Abe Wallin

Abraham has long believed in Kiva’s mission of addressing global poverty by creating relationships between individual lenders and borrowers. In 2011 he joined Kiva as the company’s first full time designer. He brings with him a steadfast belief that constantly creating is as important to humanity as eating and drinking. Prior to joining Kiva he worked at Electronic Arts, Wikia and as a freelance web and interactive designer. With over a decade of experience Abraham has designed and built a wide range of products including websites, video games and mobile applications. He most recently launched an iPhone app for fruits and vegetables called Farmanac.

Kiva Blog Updates

May 21, 2014 KV Kiva HQ
One of the best parts of my job is talking with lenders – it’s a chance to understand what works well and where improvements are needed. We recently conducted a series of interviews and tested a couple of prototypes in connection with an initiative aimed at improving the way lenders find loans on Kiva. While no two lenders are the same, we wanted to share a few common patterns we've observed when it comes to how and why people use Kiva.
 
First a caveat: there is no right or wrong way to lend. Everybody has different values, feelings about risk and...
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Apr 2, 2014 KV Kiva HQ
A few weeks ago Kiva participated in a UX Boot Camp with Cooper, a design strategy firm based in San Francisco. This was an opportunity to gather a group of talented technology professionals together and have them put a fresh set of eyes on one of the challenges Kiva has observed over the past year.
 

The Boot Camp centered around the experience of choosing loans to support on Kiva. The task of selecting one or two people out of the thousands of borrowers that are fundraising on Kiva can be daunting. Deciding where your limited money...
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Feb 10, 2014 KV Kiva HQ
At Kiva we believe creating a great user experience is essential to accomplishing our mission of connecting people through lending to alleviate poverty. The Kiva website acts as a bridge between lenders and borrowers, allowing them to feel a sense of connection with one another. Not only does a person’s experience with the Kiva website impact their lending activity, but it can also affect their motivation to contribute time and money to social good in other areas of their lives.
 
To that end, I’m excited to share...
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Aug 8, 2013 KV Kiva HQ
'Settings' can aptly be described as the plumbing of a website. They’re considerably less glamorous than the core product (e.g. lending on Kiva, posting photos on Instagram, etc.), but when they don’t work as expected it can lead to a big mess. On Kiva, the different controls we categorize as “Settings” include the type and frequency of emails you receive, how (and if) your name and photo display publicly on the Kiva website, what to do with funds that are repaid, etc. Making sure that you know how to set up your account the way you want it is part of creating a great user experience. With... Continue Reading >>
Jul 12, 2013 KV Kiva HQ
Today, we released a few changes to the navigation on the Kiva website. We're really excited about these changes and we hope they'll help make it easier for lenders and new visitors to move around the site. While some of the differences are fairly subtle, we wanted to walk you through each of the changes and share a bit of context for these updates.

The biggest change is the addition of “Zip”, with an eye catching “New” label. As Kiva grows, we are challenging ourselves to find new ways to reach even more people with innovative loan products. One way we've been doing this is... Continue Reading >>
Jun 11, 2013 KV Kiva HQ
At Kiva, we believe research is an essential part of the design process. Talking with lenders, watching them use a feature we’ve built, and analyzing data from the website are all invaluable tools which help us identify what works well and where improvements can be made.

Nearly every project we undertake can benefit from user research. This can be as simple as analyzing patterns in Google Analytics, testing a new design with a paper prototype, or releasing a feature to a small percentage of users and seeing what happens. Because we may ask you to participate in a study, or... Continue Reading >>
Apr 3, 2013 KV Kiva HQ


Industry wide it’s no secret that mobile devices will represent a significant portion of computer usage in the near future. Even today nearly 9% of Kiva’s traffic comes from smartphones, and we’ve seen these numbers grow steadily year over year. This is great news for Kiva, as it shows people are interested in making loans on their mobile phones. But we also know that we could be doing a better job helping visitors find a borrower they want to support and complete the checkout process. Looking at our mobile data we’ve noticed that visitors with mobile... Continue Reading >>
Mar 11, 2013 KV Kiva HQ
At Kiva, we’re always working hard to improve our website. We believe all interactions on the site should be accomplished with minimal effort and create a memorable experience. With that in mind, we recently made some design changes to lending team pages. 
 
In doing so, our primary goal was to highlight the ways existing and potential members can get involved with a team. To do this, we cleaned up two areas within team pages: the “about” page and team message boards. After receiving feedback from team members, we wanted to write...
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