Investing for Social & Environmental Impact
A design for catalyzing an emerging industry
A first look at an emerging industry; Coining the term “impact investing”
The new industry of impact investing involves making investments that generate social and environmental value as well as financial return, has the potential to complement philanthropy and government intervention as a potent force for addressing global challenges at scale.
Today, impact investors are actively seeking to place capital in businesses and funds that can provide solutions at a scale that purely philanthropic interventions usually cannot reach.
This moment is a messy transition in an evolution of activity that is already several decades old. The pressing question is whether impact investing will remain a small, disorganized, underleveraged niche for years or even decades to come—or whether leaders will come together to fulfill the industry’s clear promise, making this new domain a major complementary force for providing the capital, talent, and creativity needed to address pressing social and environmental challenges.
This report has been designed as a guide for the innovative leaders who can accelerate the progress of impact investing—investors, advisors to investors, entrepreneurs, philanthropists. It summarizes our findings about:
- The current state and shape of the industry at a critical moment as in its development
- How impact investing might evolve
- An approach for accelerating the growth and impact of this style of investing
- A call to action