Tag Archives: Social Investment

Book Review: Creating a World Without Poverty

Book by Muhammad Yunus. Reviewed by Barbara Merz. Creating a World Without Poverty could easily have been a retrospective. After all, its author has plenty to reflect upon. Instead, the book is unmistakably forward-looking. This book presents a compelling vision for the future of capitalism. It envisions a market where social businesses emerge to address social issues. Muhammad Yunus could have rested on his laurels when he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006. … Continue reading

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Financial Inclusion, Market Failures and New Markets: Possibilities for Community Development Finance Institutions in Australia

by Ingrid Burkett and Belinda Drew, A Foresters Community Finance Occasional Paper; October 2008. Foresters Community Finance of Queensland argues that the lack of access to affordable capital is the major challenge to the growth of the fourth sector in Australia. In this report, authors Burkett and Drew broaden the traditional definition of financial exclusion in Australia to include not just individuals and families but also groups and organisations such as civil society organisations, 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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The Phoenix Economy: 50 Pioneers in the Business of Social Innovation

Volans Ventures Ltd, London, UK; 2009. If you are looking for concrete examples of social enterprise, flick through this report. “The Phoenix Economy” features fifty examples of social innovation pioneers including businesses, financial investment houses, and governments. According to the report, the chosen fifty “create value blends across the triple bottom line agenda.” Some of the pioneers are household names including Google, General Electric, and GlaxoSmithKline pharmaceuticals. Many examples deal with the environment. For a … Continue reading

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Investors’ Perspectives: A Time for Community Bonds

by Maureen Stapleton, Alliance; June 2009. Alliance magazine is a quarterly journal aimed at informing philanthropists and social investors about the latest trends in the field worldwide. It may be a sign of the growing popularity of new financial instruments pitched to philanthropists, that the magazine is now featuring financial products. This article provides a brief introduction to yet another social investment opportunity: community bonds. According to the author, community bonds are in use in … Continue reading

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Microfinance Banana Skins 2009: Confronting Crisis and Change

by David Lascelles and Sam Mendelson, Centre for the Study of Financial Innovation; June 2009. For a clear risk report on the microfinance industry, the folks at the Centre for the Study of Financial Innovation give us “Microfinance Banana Skins 2009.” The “banana skins” in their title refers to potential risks, as in the classic cartoon slip-up. This report spotlights current risks associated with the microfinance industry. The risks are identified and ranked by investors, … Continue reading

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Social Enterprise – the fledgling fourth sector

by Chip Feiss, The Financial Times; 15 June 2009. There are signs that social enterprise, or the fledgling fourth sector, is strong and growing. The article cites the explosion of nonprofit organisations across the globe and the upsurge of socially responsible investment funds. Mainstream financial press (such as The Financial Times) has recognised the rapid growth of the fourth sector; and top tier business schools have begun to offer courses in social enterprise. Yet many … Continue reading

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Ten Nonprofit Funding Models

by William Landes Foster, Peter Kim, and Barbara Christiansen, The Stanford Social Innovation Review, Spring 2009. This article recommends that a new shorthand lexicon is needed for nonprofit leaders to articulate quickly and clearly how their organisations are focused and financed. The authors provide a useful cheat-sheet to alleviate funding fuzziness in the nonprofit sector. They identify the following ten nonprofit funding models: 1) Heartfelt connector – focusing on a cause that resonates with people … Continue reading

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Electric Evangelist – Can Shai Agassi of Better Place, An Electric-Car Company, Honour His Grand Promises?

The Economist, May 2, 2009. Shai Agassi has an idea that would radically alter the automotive industry: he’s leading the “re”-charge of the electric car. Electric cars have been around for years; however they have neither been cheap enough nor convenient enough for the mass market. So, Agassi has developed a systems integration solution for the problem. His insight is to physically separate the battery from the car, thereby allowing a network of battery swapping … Continue reading

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Book Review: The Life You Can Save: Acting Now to End World Poverty

BY Peter Singer, Text Publishing , Melbourne; 2009. Reviewed by Dr. Michael Liffman, Director, Asia-Pacific Centre for Social Investment and Philanthropy, Swinburne University. Peter Singer’s latest book should be one of his least controversial – and, paradoxically, therefore one of his most important. Singer’s ideas inevitably excite heated debate, largely because, notwithstanding their extraordinary lucidity, logic and respect for facts, they rest on premises – the priority of avoiding suffering, the interests of animals, the … Continue reading

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