Conference on Social and Sustainable Finance and Impact Investment

Country: United Kingdom

City: Oxford

Abstr. due: 20.12.2014

Dates: 23.04.15 — 24.04.15

Area Of Sciences: Economics and management;

Organizing comittee e-mail:

Organizers: Oxford University



Over the last few years, sociological as well as economic developments have combined to raise the level of activities and policy interest in various forms of social and sustainable entrepreneurship, finance and related (impact) investments. However, funding sources and rationales for these initiatives have been neglected so far in the literature as distinct subjects for inquiry. Nevertheless, foundations, individual- and group investors, the global internet-crowd, as well as government agencies have become increasingly interested and willing to support more socially, economically and environmentally sustainable forms of funding and wealth creation.
New institutions and actors have been exploring hybrid logics, mechanisms and rationales for investment that combine social and environmental components of value, together with personal values and the disciplined pursuit of financial returns - this often despite the lack of availability of suitable metrics and instruments for building such portfolios. Public and private philanthropic finance have been explored as a means to encourage and empower innovative private (social)-entrepreneurial activities aiming to deliver social value and at the same time becoming financially independent through market-based activities. However, at the present stage of development there seems to be no rational, efficient global market - more a network of supply, demand, and intermediary groups linking capital and projects. We want to know more about projects, players and their rationales when it comes to social finance and impact investments and the entrepreneurs that deliver the promises.
At the same time sustainable finance addresses a heterogeneous hodgepodge of various investments aiming for environmental, social or economic sustainability, with a strong focus on risk management. While everyone seems to approve its value proposition, few actually agree on the definition and scope of ‘sustainable finance and investment’. Many scholars however see a strong overlap and blurred boundaries between ‘social’ and ‘sustainable’ finance, especially when looking at the societal and economic developments that lead to the emergence of both of these concepts. The third pillar of sustainability, environmental perspectives finally displays a special high relevance given the onset of climate change, and its economic and societal impacts remain far from being comprehended. In all perspectives we are looking for theoretical as well as practical insights, from academia and professionals, from a variety of perspectives.

    Social and Sustainable Finance, Relevance and Global Governance
    Impact Investing - Cases, Instruments, Players, Social and Financial Risk and Returns
    Public Policy and Public-Private Partnerships
    Environmental Markets and Finance, Stranded Assets and Carbon Markets
    Interdisciplinary Perspectives, e.g. Ethics, CSR, CG, Motives, Identity
    Crowdfunding and Venture Capital and its social impact
    Employee ownership, mutual funds and holding companies
    Social Entrepreneurship, Financing, Scaling and Growing


    Dr Pamela Hartigan, Director of the Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship, Saïd Business School, University of Oxford.
    Prof Gordon Clark, Director, Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment, University of Oxford
    Prof Alex Nicholls, Saïd Business School, University of Oxford
    Prof Othmar M. Lehner, Director, ACRN Oxford Research Centre
    Dr John Hoffmire, Impact Investment Funds, Saïd Business School, University of Oxford
    Dr Matthew Haigh, SOAS, University of London
    Dr Ashby Monk, Stanford University
    Dr Olaf Weber, SEED, University of Waterloo


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