Research for The Good Investor was conducted by Investing for Good in partnership with NPC and SROI Network, and was commissioned by Big Society Capital in partnership with Deutsche Bank. The outcomes matrix section plugs into wikiVOIS, and allies with Inspiring Impact.
Research included consultation with the following UK social investors: Big Issue Invest, Big Society Capital, Bridges Ventures, CAF Venturesome, Deutsche Bank, Esmee Fairbairn Foundation, Nesta, Social Investment Business, Triodos Bank as well as discussions with nef, SIAA, and the UK Cabinet Office.
The Good Investor draws on the rich field of existing impact literature. Below are some pointers in relation to specific sections, as well as a list of some of the resources that informed the thinking more generally.
The section on impact analysis drew on The Good Analyst (also published by Investing for Good), and Theory of Change frameworks.
Further ideas about evidence can be found in the Nesta’s Standards of Evidence for Impact Investing, and through the Nesta Alliance for Useful Evidence.
As noted in the chapter, there is no definitively established methodology for impact measurement and analysis. The Tools and Resources for Assessing Social Impact (TRASI) website offers a large database of different systems. Among the better known are SROI (Social Return on Investment) and GIIRS (Global Impact Investing Ratings System), though some using SROI have found it hard to arrive at reliable valuations, and that while GIIRS offers good definition on the ESG side, there is less treatment of impact generation. The European Venture Philanthropy Association (EVPA) published a first draft of an impact measurement manual late in 2012.
- Tools and Resources for Assessing Social Impact (TRASI)
- Global Impact Investing Ratings System (GIIRS)
The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) is a good resource for general ESG considerations. For cost benefit accounting, HM Treasury’s Green Book sets out the UK government guidance and framework for evaluation.
3 Investment Decision and Deal-Making
Investment deal-making involves the setting of objectives and the selection of indicators to use as investment KPIs. For this, the outcomes matrix can be a useful resource. The outcomes matrix will plug into wikiVOIS, and sync with IRIS (these stages are currently under development).
The reporting section draws on the Principles of Good Impact Reporting, produced by ACEVO, Charity Finance Group, Institute of Fundraising, NCVO, New Philanthropy Capital, Small Charities Coalition, Social Enterprise UK, SROI Network
There is a large volume of information on how organisations can approach defining and measuring their own impact, and establishing their impact plans. The following three — Charities Evaluation Services, Social Audit Network and nef’s Proving and Improving toolkit — offer useful entry points.
- Clearly So
- UK Department For International Development (DFID)
- Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN)
- London Benchmarking Group (LBG)
- National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO)
- Rockefeller Foundation
- Social Finance
- Social Reporting Standard
- The Charity Commission
- The Urban Institute
- Triangle Consulting and the Outcomes Star