With the advent of social impact bonds in the U.K. – including significant news last week of the call for 40 million pounds for four new trials in London, Birmingham and Leicestershire – and the flurry of replications by other governments in response, it is timely and necessary to engage in a conversation around some of the difficult, unanswered questions surfaced in the wake of the innovation.
What types of social impacts can realistically be addressed by this method of financing? What should investors be looking for or considering when thinking about “pay for success” investments? How do social impact bonds compare to other forms of cross-sector solutions for addressing social ills?
Social impact bonds have real implications for the future of public-private partnerships. If we get this right, greater collaboration and efficiency will result, with multiple players from all sectors working together effectively to solve society’s most intractable social and environmental problems. Frankly, it might just be the smartest way.
Justina Lai of the Rockefeller Foundation will facilitate an Open Space discussion, together with the Nonprofit Finance Fund, sharing insights on service provider and readiness issues they’ve encountered through their learning hub on Social Impact Bonds. And you – private actors, intermediaries, non-profit service providers, impact investors, researchers, and advocates – will bring your own unique perspective to the conversation on what we know so far and where we still have more to learn.
Proposed session time: Thursday September 8, 10.45am.