Impact Investing Policy
Public policy significantly influences the markets in which impact investors participate and can incentivize or discourage investment. As part of our field-building efforts for the last decade we have explored the role that policy can play in fostering the growth and effectiveness of impact investing markets both domestically and globally. Our work has supported the efforts of the U.S. National Advisory Board on Impact Investing and its successor the U.S. Alliance on Impact Investing, the G8 Social Impact Investment Taskforce, and the White House Impact Economy.
With support from the Rockefeller Foundation, Pacific Community Ventures and the Initiative for Responsible Investment (IRI) at Harvard University conducted some of the first research on impact investing policy. In 2010 PCV and IRI published a first-of-its-kind framework for impact investing policy design and analysis. This framework has been utilized by policymakers globally to develop and implement impact investing policies within their respective countries. In the years since PCV and IRI have collaborated on additional research projects and initiatives focused on impact investing policy. These include:
- Impact investing policy relevant to institutional investors in the U.S.
- The Impact Investing Policy Collaborative (IIPC), a research-oriented global community of policymakers and practitioners committed to policy innovation
- The Global Learning Exchange (GLE), a multi-stakeholder platform launched as part of the G8 Social Impact Investment Taskforce for the exchange of ideas and experience among field leaders and practitioners
- Sector-specific research on impact investing policy and social enterprise
- The London Principles, a set of guidelines intended to assist governments considering impact investing as a tool to address social objectives
- A review of five years of global impact investing policy activity
U.S. Impact Investing Policy
In the last several years our work has focused on impact investing policy domestically. In 2013, Pacific Community Ventures, Enterprise Community Partners, and IRI launched the Accelerating Impact Investing Initiative (AI3) to improve and expand the market for impact investments in the U.S. through public policy. The AI3’s work has served as a resource for the U.S. Impact Investing Alliance, policymakers, foundations, and other stakeholders who are interested in advancing supportive impact investing policy nationally. Our research includes:
- An overview of the domestic impact investing ecosystem produced for the U.S. National Advisory Board on Impact Investing
- A report examining historic and present ways policy leverages private capital for public good, and a set of criteria for evaluating new impact investing policy proposals
- An online catalog and report on pension fund Economically Targeted Investments (ETIs), following the U.S. Department of Labor’s ERISA ETI guidance
- A policy “map” illustrating various levels of U.S. government involvement in the market
Pacific Community Ventures remains committed to exploring the central role that policy plays in the growth and maturation of the impact investing market.