Webinar: Why Should Social Justice Funders Care About Impact Investing?

A Project Phoenix Webinar

Co-Sponsored by Funders for a Just Economy


May 9, 2017 | 10am PT / 11am MT / noon CT / 1pm ET
(90 minutes)


— RSVP to Sanetra Richards at sanetra@nfg.org —

With Leading Expert: David Wood, Ph.D., Director of the Initiative for Responsible Investment
Hauser Center for Nonprofit Organizations at Harvard University 

For many years, foundations, unions, and individual investors have prioritized social screens and risk averse strategies with the intention to indirectly move investments toward social justice values. Screened and intentional investments can support advocacy to change corporate and industry behavior, and can have significant impact on the issues of environmental and social justice that many funders address through grant making. Additionally, there are intentional efforts to divest from fossil fuels, private prisons, and other extractive industries and attempt to redirect those investments to more social justice and transformative systems change projects. While significant, these types of efforts targeting companies have not necessarily buoyed enterprises that share economic justice and community values.  

Within the broad definition of impact investing, there is an emergent conversation that looks to the definition of impact that is embedded in progressive theories of change. Funders who have long provided grants to seed social change efforts are now interested in ways to move beyond traditional corporate accountability and disinvestment strategies to consider the emerging kinds of deeply aligned and impactful investment, alongside of grant making.  

But what is impactful investing? And how is it being deployed in strategies that range from assuring market rate returns, to those that subordinate return, to targeting the systemic change we are tackling with our grant making strategies? And what can we, as Program Officers, do to maximize our mission driven impact using impact investing? 

The purpose of this webinar is to illuminate what the current landscape of “impact” investing looks like and how Program Officers who shepherd grant making portfolios can think about aligning our work with social movements and supporting projects to absorb both grant resources and investment capital.

— RSVP to Sanetra Richards at sanetra@nfg.org —