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Winter 2011: Social Impact Investing

Governments, third sector organisations and business are all beginning to re-examine the way in which they each contribute to finding, implementing and participating in solutions to address social and environmental challenges faced by our local and global communities.  As philanthropic and government capital is increasingly insufficient to address these challenges discussion more often than not is turning to market-led approaches. One such approach under exploration and gaining momentum around the world is social impact investing … Continue reading

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Autumn 2011: Volunteering

2011 is the tenth anniversary of the international year of volunteering. Ten years ago, the United Nations declared 2001 to be the international year of volunteering and this had a strong impact on enhancing volunteering in developed and developing countries. In 2011 the UN will commemorate the 10 year anniversary by publishing the World State of Volunteering. As such, it is appropriate that the first Knowledge Connect in 2011 is dedicated to volunteering. As Prof. … Continue reading

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Summer 2010-2011: Ethics in the Third Sector

In this issue we take a look at ethics in the Third Sector, from a broad discussion of the ideas underpinning civilisation, to the values each of us brings to decisions and we then explore the link between personal values and corporate responsibility. Recent developments such as the unethical conduct of some financial institutions during the global financial crisis as well as the recent example of the BP ‘Deepwater Horizon’ oil spill have resulted in … Continue reading

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Winter 2010: Leadership and Creating Social Movements

Welcome to the seventh issue of Knowledge Connect. The following selections revolve around the topic of leadership. Leadership is often equated with power. In practice, the true power of any leader is not determined by his or her position alone; it depends upon the economic, political and social forces over which he or she presides. Leaders in the social impact sector often deal with complex and sticky social problems. Making headway on these problems is … Continue reading

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Autumn 2010: Engaging in Public Policy

6. Autumn 2010: Engaging in Public Policy Welcome to the sixth issue of Knowledge Connect.  This issue considers the causes of major public policy failings in both the short and long term.  With the failure of the UN Copenhagen Conference on climate change to the failings of humanitarian relief there is now a renewed call for policymakers to re-orient their response. New Yorker writer George Packer pleads for longer-term recovery rather than band-aid solutions for … Continue reading

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Summer 2010: Social Impact Measurement

If the field of social impact is to mature it needs to be able to consistently measure social returns. This issue puts the spotlight on the debates over how best to measure social impact. A uniform performance metric for all social impact organisations is an ongoing quest, in both practical and academic circles. The search for the ‘Holy Measurement Grail’ continues. The summaries selected below highlight recent publications highlighting the manifold challenges of measuring social … Continue reading

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Spring 2009: Social Impact Investment

Welcome to the fourth issue of Knowledge Connect, CSI’s quarterly review that seeks to share insights from publications on social impact. This issue features articles about the rapidly evolving field of social investment. Social investment has started to take hold in at least three sectors of the economy: 1) finance, in the form of microcredit loans, 2) health, with investments in immunisation bonds, and energy, through support for clean technologies. Typically, social investment funds aim … Continue reading

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Autumn 2009: Innovative Thinking about Social Impact

Welcome to the third issue of Knowledge Connect, CSI’s review that seeks to connect readers to ideas and debates related to social impact. This issue highlights articles that deal with innovation – a fashionable term in social impact circles. The summaries below highlight social innovators at work and some of the behind-the-scenes work required to make these innovative ideas stick. Writer and activist Peter Singer pushes innovative thinking directly onto the world stage with his … Continue reading

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Summer 2009: Leadership and Accountability

Welcome to the second issue of Knowledge Connect, a quarterly review by the Centre for Social Impact (CSI). Knowledge Connect seeks to connect readers to the latest social impact thinking worldwide. This issue focuses on leadership. Those in leadership positions in nonprofit organisations, government, and philanthropic bodies are presently facing a new set of challenges as they seek to chart a way forward through turbulent economic times. The articles profiled examine ways to enhance leadership decision-making, … Continue reading

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Spring 2008: Philanthropy, Social Investment and Public Policy

Welcome to Knowledge Connect, CSI’s review of noteworthy social impact thinking worldwide. In this issue, five selected articles focus on the market dynamics of philanthropic and social investment funds. From the expansion of social investment in the UK, the dawn of non-profit IPOs, and excesses in US philanthropy, we examine ideas flowing from the social marketplace. What’s working? What’s not? And, what’s an appropriate role for the State? Two of the pieces summarised focus on … Continue reading

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