December 2022-January 2023 | Field News & Resources
This page features this month's highlights, announcements, resources, and general news related to advancements in the impact investing field.
- The Wall Street Journal profiles Melinda French Gates and her focus on funding gender equality through both grantmaking through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and impact investments through the foundation and Pivotal Ventures.
- The Milken Institute published The Path to Inclusive Capitalism: An Asset Owner Guide for Investment Portfolios. The guide is designed to drive DEI within investment management teams and portfolios across the asset management industry. Authors cite four components on the path to inclusive capitalism: incorporating diversity and inclusion into governance; sourcing diverse talent; underwriting equitably; and committing to equitable monitoring and engagement.
- Mercy Corps Chief Investment Officer and co-founder of Mercy Corps Ventures Scott Onder appeals to investors for more catalytic capital to fuel global climate adaptation and climate resiliency.
- The California Wellness Foundation announced its latest round of grants along with $7 million in impact investments that support civic engagement in LGBTQ+ communities, power building in BIPOC communities, and environmental justice organizing.
- What are PRIs and why do they matter? An explainer on how foundations use Program Related Investments by Jessica Jones, assistant professor of management & entrepreneurship at University of Tennessee.
- Responsible investing advocate and corporate responsibility agitator Sister Patricia Daly, best known as “Sister Pat,” died in December. Sister Pat espoused shareholder activism as a tool for impact investing and was formerly executive director of Investor Advocates for Social Justice.
- The Community Foundation for Northeast Florida has made its first impact investments totaling $1.1 million to expand the supply of affordable housing in Northeast Florida. These investments are designed to increase access to capital for local community development corporations that otherwise might not qualify for loans through traditional lenders.
- Ron Homer, chief strategist for U.S. Impact Investing at RBC Global Asset Management, shares the three lessons learned from the pioneering collaborative, the Minnesota Impact Investing Initiative. Also known as “MI3,” the collaborative led by the McKnight and Bush foundations and the Otto Bremer Trust invested nearly $20 million in a fixed income investment strategy managed by RBC aiming to close racial wealth gaps in the state.
- The editors at ImpactPHL host a blog from the Boston Ujima Project, a Black-led nonprofit with a mission to return wealth to working-class communities of color. Its Ujima Fund, funded in part by the Rockefeller Foundation among other philanthropies, is poised to invest some $2.8 million in local small businesses and real estate.
- US SIF's 2022 Trends Report shows a significantly lower AUM in sustainable investment from 2020: $8.4 trillion compared to $17.1 trillion. US SIF said the sharp fall in AUM is due to a change in methodology and new proposals from the SEC that are designed to crack down on greenwashing, or misleading claims about environmental credentials.
- As a companion to the 2022 US SIF Trends Report, outgoing CEO Lisa Woll shares five reasons why sustainable investing is important, and here to stay despite political opposition to ESG criteria.
- The Knight Foundation published its third review of diversity in asset management among the nation’s 55 largest charitable foundations. Overall the report shows increased investing with diverse-owned firms–those owned by women, racial or ethnic minorities- among the foundations. Yet the authors report just 18% of these foundation assets are invested with diverse-owned firms. The remaining $64.58 billion (81.9%) are invested with firms primarily owned by white men. Further, many foundations do not share their data.