Impact at Scale
Policy Innovation for Institutional Investment with Social and Environmental Benefit
March 12, 2012
By InSight at Pacific Community Ventures, and the Harvard University Initiative for Responsible Investment
This report explores the importance of institutional asset owners in the United States—including pension funds, endowments, and insurers—as an especially important category of current and prospective impact investors. With total assets of over $20 trillion, they play a fundamental role in domestic and world capital markets.
The public policy lens in the report provides an especially useful tool for examining the impact investing activity of these institutions; the availability of capital from asset owners is closely tied to the actions of government, and, while fiduciary duty can constrain investment for social or environmental impact, tax credits and other subsidies can support the activity. Institutional asset owners have shared characteristics and a surprisingly diverse track record of impact investing on which to build widespread support for policy innovation in the best interests of fund beneficiaries.
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