The Global Impact Investing Network (www.globalimpactinvestingnetwork.org) was launched on 25 September. It is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to building infrastructure, activities, education, and research to enable more effective impact investing around the world.
“Impact investing” means a growing trend to use “for-profit” investment to address social and environmental problems. The GIIN’s programmatic agenda is rooted in the challenges investors face and it is a forum for identifying and addressing the systemic barriers that hinder the efficiency and effectiveness of the impact industry. The two largest initiatives are the Investors’ Council and Industry Infrastructure Development.
• Investors’ Council: The GIIN’s Investors’ Council is a group of leading impact investors representing different institutions from around the world. The Investors’ Council will provide leadership in the industry, serve as a platform for disseminating the latest research and best practices, and support the creation and adoption of industry infrastructure, including ways of measuring the effectiveness of impact investments.
• Infrastructure Development—IRIS: The GIIN will serve as a platform for coordinating the development of industry infrastructure that can benefit all impact investors by creating a more efficient marketplace and addressing common challenges. The core initiative is the Impact Reporting and Investment Standards (IRIS), a common framework for measuring social and environmental impact of investments. IRIS addresses a major barrier to the growth of the impact investing industry—the lack of transparency and credibility in how funds define, track, and report on the social and environmental performance of their capital. IRIS provides a standardized approach that leads to lower transaction costs and an improved ability to understand the impact of investments.
In addition to these core initiatives, the GIIN will also support education, research, and targeted outreach to help foster a coherent impact investing industry that channels investment capital efficiently to solutions to pressing social and environmental problems.
On 25 September, in the launch at the Clinton Global Initiative (www.clintonglobalinitiative.org) annual meeting in New York, GIIN announced the founding members of GIIN Investors Council. Founding membership is offered to investors who volunteered their time and energy in support of the GIIN: Acumen Fund, The Annie E. Casey Foundation, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Calvert Foundation, Capricorn Investment Group, Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, Equilibrium Capital, Generation Investment Management, Gray Ghost Ventures, IGNIA, J.P. Morgan, Lundin for Africa, Lunt Family Office (Armonia), Omidyar Network, Prudential, The Rockefeller Foundation, Root Capital, Shorebank/NCIF, Trans-Century, Triodos Investment Management, and Wolfensohn & Company.
GIIN will add more active impact investors to the Investors’ Council. For information on Investors’ Council membership contact Amit Bouri, Director of Strategy and Development, at abouri[at] globalimpactinvestingnetwork.org.