2020: A New Dawn for the corporate social investment and development sector

The continuing economic crises have forced corporate social investors, grant-makers, donors and philanthropists to reconsider their contributions to society and social purpose organisations as well as their investment and development strategies. This refocus and reconsideration is compounded by increased expectations around transparency, accountability and questions have been asked regarding the effectiveness of grants, donations and corporate social investments. In addition, …

Social Innovation to Drive Shared Value

Social innovation is becoming a buzzword which is discussed around the world. There’s a surge in attention and government support for social development and social innovation, because it’s seen to be providing effective ways for addressing societal challenges and possible pathways towards more sustainable, inclusive and resilient societies. Today’s global challenges in line with the Sustainable Development Goals – from …

Understanding the concept and value of social innovation

The term social innovation has been used in a number of ways. Some of the earliest references, dating back to the 1960s, use it to refer to experimental research in the social sciences and humanities. Since then, the term has been used in reference to social enterprise and social entrepreneurship, technological innovations which yield social benefits, corporate social responsibility and …

Social capital – its value and how to measure it

The newly revisited concept of social capital is now prominent in several fields of social science. For Next Generation Consultants, the concept became important with the introduction of the integrated reporting framework that requires companies and organisations to report on how their activities either contribute to or diminish capital formation. The International Integrated Reporting Council’s guidance suggests that a company’s …

The value and importance of socio-economic research and baseline studies in social investment and development practices

Definition: Socio-economics is the study of the relationship between economic activity and social life. In many cases, however, socio-economists focus on the social impact of a specific kind of economic change. Such changes might include displacement of people due to a closing factory, village-to-city migration, market manipulation and even the signing of trade treaties, etc. Value: The goal of a socio-economic study …

Performance measurement and management – future critical tools for social and impact investors

Performance measurement and management practices – monitoring, evaluation and impact assessment – play an invaluable role in providing insights into becoming more effective. Lessons from past evaluation studies have shaped our current approach to development. The field of performance management continues to evolve in response to key pressures, reflecting and influencing trends in development thinking. While the tools for performance management and the approaches …

Determining impact and return on investment: Searching for a holy grail?

Assessing the impact of sustainable development programmes, especially ongoing performance measurement and management, has gained momentum in recent years. The interest and growth in numerous approaches, technologies, processes and systems that aim to understand the difference a development intervention can make can be attributed to impact investors’ and other stakeholders’ expectations. But determining impact and return on investment can at …