Funders who invest in social impact initiatives, from across all sectors, can play critically important roles in supporting social innovation. Foundations, government granting bodies, corporations and social venture capitalists are some of the key players in this space. Certainly familiar with the constant flux present in their own sphere, funding organizations and/or individuals are well placed in society to provide important leadership for change through new collaborations, creative strategy development, useful evaluation practices and incorporation of a range of investment models, including things like, Impact Investing.
In recognition of the special capacity of funders to participate in creating the necessary conditions for social innovation, SiG is supporting the social finance movement in Canada, as well as observing funding trends, researching best practices, developing case studies and offering education and training for, and through, philanthropic organizations.
While it may seem obvious to start in the Social Finance and Impact Investing area, funders could take a dip into the Social Innovation field first to get an overview. We also highly recommend that you explore the concept of Developmental Evaluation, and how this practice can enhance useful learning and also minimize risk when testing new ideas for social change.
A publication that may be of particular interest to funders is “Accelerating our Impact: Philanthropy, Innovation and Social Change” by Katharine A. Pearson.
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