Just over 10-years ago the term impact investing was coined and today the field is at crossroads. Large scale mainstream players are entering the space with significant funds committed to impact investing. Now more than ever, impact investing can do great good, by funding the achievement of the SDGs and directing much needed capital to create impact economies that work for all… or it can fail to deliver, by reinforcing inequalities and the system that has created social and environmental issues in the first place, instead of deconstructing them. This opens the space up to the risk of “impact washing” with all of the wasted promise that this implies.
There is an urgency to act now: principles will have to be defined. Thinkers and experts in the field met during the 2018’s European Forum Alpbach, established in 1945, to address this relevant question of our time.
Christoph J Kellner