APPLYING AN IMPACT LENS TO ALL WE DO
Our Foundation is committed to the advancement of sustainable enterprises with demonstrable positive impacts as well as greater community awareness of and commitment to those enterprises.
Focus on all potential impacts
We visited 2030 with the Institute For The Future and global changemakers around the world. The state of the world – of humanity – in 2030 starkly revealed the interconnectedness of social and environmental impact, of social and business entrepreneurship, along with an imperative to think and act around all of these — to think in terms of impact within and upon the entire ecosystem. So we re-oriented. No more siloes. Only interconnected systems. We now apply an impact lens to all that we do, enacting and supporting policies and initiatives that reflect the Foundation’s impact mission. The language we use, the partners with whom we work, the relationships we nurture, the investments we make, are all aimed at maximizing positive impacts and minimizing negative.
Think ecosystems and systems
We amplified our ecosystems perspective and intensified our focus on entrepreneurs and organizations who are ecosystem-changing innovators — game changing entrepreneurs rather than organizations engaged in social service delivery, as critical as we know those to be. Our Foundation has always been intent on supporting risk takers and innovators, but going forward we channel our support toward paradigm-shifting initiatives with high potential for amplified impact on a massive scale — either by replication orf the concept or methodology, or the organization’s own capacity to scale up.
Seek positive impacts across all asset classes
We assess all assets in our investment portfolio for positive and negative impacts. For example, we ensure our investment in bonds must be innovative, impactful systems-changing initiatives, directed at education, water and food security, natural disaster preparedness, affordable housing and renewable energy to underserved populations.
Assess returns on investments multidimensionally
We aim to apply impact criteria to assessing our returns on investment, asking additional piercing questions of fund managers and companies in which we invest to optimize positive social, environmental and governance impact without sacrificing financial returns. As one key measure of a company’s putting into practice any positive social impact, we want to know what percentages of their board and senior management teams are women or other minorities.
Aim to do no further harm
We apply a “do no further harm” lens to all grant making and investments. This lens guards against the possibility that in supporting an initiative in one part of the global ecosystem, we are not inadvertently creating negative social or environmental impacts in another.