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How community foundations can unlock the possibilities of place-based impact investing

ImpactAlpha, April 12 – Place-based impact investing is about partnerships, best implemented when regional funders work together to solve complex challenges in the place they call home. Some of the most valuable stakeholders in this work are community foundations, organizations that work every day to create positive outcomes for their region. Sometimes called “community fairy

Opportunity Zones need responsive, transparent and long term investments

  • Community development finance... is the backbone of strong cities and communities.
  • The Opportunity Zone program... is a significant departure from other community investment programs.
  • Investments in these zones... need to be responsive, transparent, long term and reach all communities that need them.

Knocking down persistent myths about impact investing

  • It’s time… To update impact investing’s narrative to dispel myths that are holding back the field.
  • Choice is… A strength for impact investing. No single social investing strategy will work for everyone.
  • Measurement is… Necessary. We have work to do on standardization, but it’s time to stop pretending there are no frameworks.
  • Capital matters… But so do field builders, research and platforms. We have to expand impact investing’s knowledge base.

How investors can get the most climate-change impact for their bucks

  • Current impact investing measurement tools… fall short in assessing ventures’ future carbon-reduction potential
  • A new tool… developed by the PRIME Coalition, the Boston nonprofit connecting families and foundations to climate ventures, and NYSERDA, New York State’s energy innovation agency, assess companies’ potential for climate impact as they scale up.
  • PRIME is keen to engage... other investors streamline the tools and explore its use across other sectors.

Four ways to build a new, and better, US development finance institution

  • Bipartisan support... A proposal for a new United States Development Finance Institution has bipartisan momentum in a politically polarized Washington.
  • To get it right... the architects should expand the institution's set of financing tools and embed impact management in the organization's DNA, say Dalberg's Kusi Hornberger and Shyam Sundaram...

What’s the fiduciary duty of index investors when it comes to gun companies?

  • Index funds should focus... on how gun sales gun affect the systems on which all of the companies in the index depend, says B-Lab's legal head Rick Alexander.
  • A fiduciary... must think systemically in order to serve the interests of investors.
  • This means... an investment steward can forgo a gain at an individual company to preserve systemic value, and the value of an entire portfolio.

As shareholders get active on climate, the SEC lets companies duck votes

  • Many impact investors...believe that holding positions in public companies can lead to positive impact because of the ability to pressure management through shareholder proposals
  • A recent SEC action highlights... however, the limitations of shareholder activism under federal and state law....