Reflecting on the highlights of the past year, and the conversations that I had with interviewees from the streets of San Francisco to the villages of Rwanda; and everywhere in between.
Global problems require big solutions. Meet the investors who are using private capital to achieve positive impact at scale.
Social enterprises and non-profits are being hit hard by the effects of the pandemic, an unexpected crisis that can derail their impact. Stepping into the breach is Open Road Alliance, a market leader in social sector bridge funding.
If we are going to make progress on the triple bottom line of people, planet and profit, then embracing sustainable practices has to be a prime concern. Is it really the difficult balancing act people claim it to be?
In an age where technology seeps into every facet of life, there are still an estimated 3.6 billion people who do not have access to the internet. Cut off from the world’s biggest advances, these people are in danger of being left behind. Looking to change this is a project called Giga, with the aim of connecting every school in the world to the internet. One of its leaders spoke to us about why this is the best time to drive it forward.
The financial system has a plumbing problem. We have an infrastructure of existing pipework, but it doesn’t reach everyone. So argues Jennifer Pryce, who heads up Calvert Impact Capital, an investment firm taking capital to the most underserved communities.
Vikram Gandhi was a successful investment banker for many years before shifting into teaching an impact investing course at Harvard Business School. It’s a move that has taught him why learning is a lifelong occupation that goes both ways.
If you bet on energy, you get results in sanitation, nutrition, education and many other areas. Renewable energy entrepreneur and off-grid power systems expert, Claudio Pedretti, explains the positive impacts of renewable energy for off-grid rural communities.
Investing is something that runs in Kristin Hull’s blood, a skill she picked up as a teenager. Now the CEO of an impact fund in Oakland, she is absolutely committed to the idea that our capital needs to benefit people and the planet, and actively discourages her clients from being passive when it comes to finance.
The boundaries between hard finance and philanthropy are getting blurrier as impact investing comes of age. At the forefront of this change is Bridges Fund Management, co-founded by Michele Giddens. She explains why capital can do much more than just make money for those who are already wealthy.
Rupert Scofield loaned money to those who were ignored by banks and exploited by others when he co-founded FINCA. Now, he’s turning his attention to social enterprises, which he believes could have big benefits for those already helped by microfinance.
Joy Anderson is the Founder and President of a think tank focused on using finance as a tool for social change. Instrumental in founding and shaping the gender lens investing field, the Criterion Institute continues to push what is possible when we believe we can change the financial systems within which we live.