Social Finance Round Up: The UK Announces Social Value Bill produces a weekly round up featuring social finance related news, insights, job openings, and events. We source the content for these round ups from Twitter, an RSS reader, and directly from our community of social finance practitioners. Below is our round up for the week of March 5, 2012.

Last Week on

Sherri Torjman published Standards: Not your standard fare on February 28, 2012

Ammar Habib Khan published An Alternative Approach to Investing in Social Impact Bonds on February 29, 2012

James Watson published Looking Forward to SPRiNG – A Fresh Take on Dialogue for the Sustainability Professional on March 1, 2012

Becky Slater published Video: Mark Kramer on the Need for a New Approach to Funding on March 2, 2012

Canadian and International News

The United Kingdom passed the Social Value Bill, directing public service commissioners to take social, environmental and economic considerations into account when awarding contracts. Read the text of the bill [PDF].

Impact Reporting and Investment Standards (IRIS) – the performance measurement initiative of the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) – and FIELD announce a data sharing partnership [PDF] to help bridge the fragmented U.S social and environmental performance measurement landscape.

First-of-its-kind Global Cleantech Innovation Index 2012 is published with The Cleantech Group and WWF examining where the trends and growth is occurring in entrepreneurial cleantech innovation companies.

Ethical Markets research shows over $3 trillion invested in green transition since 2007.

A thoughtful take by Huffington Post writer Geri Stengel on “How Impact Investing Needs to Change” in the wake of the Indian microfinance crisis.

Forbes Contributor Adrienne Burke summarizes the possible growth of crowdfunding in the U.S through the Entrepreneur Access to Capital Act.

Omidyar Network and Accion International invest $3.2 million in Zambia-based mobile payments company Mobile Transactions to help create a ‘cashless Africa’.

An overview of the Harvard Social Enterprise Conference from NextBillion.

Microfinance giant SKS probes into their microfinance operations revealing a controversial account of loan officer behavior leading to client suicides in Andhra Pradhesh.

Admitting failure with Vikram Akula, former CEO of Indian MFI SKS, at Harvard’s Social Enterprise Conference: “If he were to do it again, he stressed a new set of 3 C’s…culture, control and codes of conduct.”

‘Disrupting the Status Quo’ reflects on the 7th annual Sustainable Business and Social Impact Conference held at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business.

A new advisory panel has been tasked with implementing OECD’s CSR Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises – is this a diversion from the real issues or a key solution?

Chris White, MP talks about the progress of the UK’s recently announced Social Value Bill: “In a nutshell, the Bill aims to reform the commissioning of public services so that when considering the design of contracts, social value is part of that process.

Climate finance could help smallholder farmers adopt sustainable agriculture.

Social Finance Learning and Best Practices

The Non Nonprofit is an interesting new book by Steve Rothschild – the founder of Invest in Outcomes, which developed a new financial instrument to fund nonprofits – on  the theme of ‘philantrocapitalism’.

Are impact investors focused on just financial returns – a discussion on the ‘bottom line’ for impact investors.

Lessons learned at Harvard while bringing investments in line with university values.

A detailed discussion of the challenges and opportunities of impact investing in Latin America and the Caribbean from Luis Alberto Moreno, President of the Inter-American Development Bank Group.

Muhammad Yunus, the economist who founded Bangladesh’s Grameen Bank, speaks about his vision of “social businesses”, his forced departure from Grameen and the recent controversies that have dogged microfinance in India and elsewhere.

“Gender considerations remain largely disregarded in existing climate funds, even though women are some of the hardest hit by the impacts of climate change…” – an interview with Liane Schalatek, Associate Director of the Heinrich Böll Foundation in North America.

Sir Ronald Cohen of Social Finance UK discusses “Why Do We Need Capital Markets?” at the Columbia Business School (video).

Reflections by David Roodman on microfinance savings products and their results from Savings Studies: Flummoxing Findings.

Counting something and making it count: metric tracking in the impact investing space.

Laurie Lane-Zucker asks, what do we mean by impact? There is a lot of talk about investing in it and measuring it. But how do we define it?


The MaRS Centre for Impact Investing is hiring a Manager, SVX and Market Development, responsible for co-managing the SVX initiative, with particular focus on venture and investor outreach and management, alongside providing strategic support to the organization’s market and product development pillar.

Rise Asset Development is looking for a Loan Coordinator, responsible for managing and growing the loan portfolio. The Loan Coordinator will have experience in local issues of entrepreneurship, poverty and/or experience with small businesses.

Upcoming Events

Full-Day Enterprising Non-Profits Orientation Sessions
March 5 and 16th, United Way Toronto, Toronto, ON

Enterprising Non-Profits (Alberta): Not-for-Profits Making Profits
March 7, 2012, Calgary, AB

The Global Alliance for Banking Values (GABV) Conference
March 8 – 10, Vancouver, BC

Social Enterprise Day of Learning – Social Enterprise Dragons
March 8, 2012 Goldcorp Centre for the Arts (SFU), Vancouver BC

Toronto for Acumen 101
March 15, 2012, Centre for Social Innovation (Spadina), Toronto

Enterprising Non-Profits (Alberta): Building Your Social Enterprise Workshop
March 20, 2012, Sylvan Lake, AB

100 WHF-Stanford PACS Conference 2012
Mar 23, 2012, The Boston Harbor Hotel, Boston, MA

The Social Enterprise Exchange
March 27, 2012, Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre, Glasgow, Scotland

Professional Education Programme: Investing for Environmental and Social Impact [PDF]
March 28-30, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Oxford Jam ’12
March 28-30, 2012, Oxford, United Kingdom

Did we miss any news, insights, or events? Use the comment form below to add to this round up.

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