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Setting the path

New impact investing ‘road map’ to help boost scale, effectiveness

Amit Bouri envisions a future where impact is part of all investing.

The Global Impact Investing Network is calling on the investing community to take various steps to increase the "scale and effectiveness of impact investing."

Among 18 actions outlined in the network's "Roadmap for the Future of Impact Investing" report are forming principles and standards to strengthen the identity of impact investing; aligning incentives with impact so that impact performance is a key driver of allocation and compensation decisions; expanding the accessibility of impact investing products; creating tools and services to support the integration of impact investing; expanding education and training; and developing policies and regulations that support impact investing.

The non-profit network is dedicated to expanding the integration of impact investing to address challenges like climate change and social inequality. To develop the road map, which was released March 20, the network consulted with more than 350 individuals, including pension fund officials and money managers.

"Last year, as we marked 10 years since the creation of a formal global impact investing market, it became apparent to me that the current trajectory of the industry, although impressive, just wasn't going to be enough. ... A new plan was needed to exponentially accelerate our impact, " said Amit Bouri, GIIN's co-founder and CEO, in an introductory letter included in the report. "This road map is that plan. In it, we articulate a new endgame for the impact investing industry — to consider how we can have an impact on all investing and spur systemic change in the global financial markets. ... To lead the way to a new future where impact is embedded in all investment decisions and impact investing is an option for everyone."

Abhilash Mudaliar, Seattle-based research director of the GIIN, said in a telephone interview that the organization plans to use the road map to help develop a strategic plan over the next few years.

In the near-term, Mr. Mudaliar said the GIIN plans to schedule workshops with asset owners, academics, money managers and others to develop an implementation plan for the road map's 18 actions and assign tasks.

"It is going to take a lot of diverse groups to bring all of these actions to light," Mr. Mudaliar said.

The road map is available on the GIIN's website.— meaghan kilroy