There is an estimated $2.6 trillion annual funding gap to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030. More than 3 billion people live on less than $2.50/day, and climate change threatens to have catastrophic and irreversible consequences for our planet.
At the same time, with new technologies and global connectivity, there has never been so much potential to find world-changing solutions at scale. However, it is clear that creative impact investment models and innovative government policies will also be central to paving pathways to scale.
The impact finance market is growing rapidly but remains a small fraction of total global assets under management – less than 1%. In order to grow this market to the scale necessary to address today’s global ‘wicked problems,’ a step change is required.
The growth of the impact finance sector has been hindered by a lack of robust data around return expectations and standards for impact measurement. We need academic research, teaching, and knowledge-exchange to remove these barriers to growth.
The Oxford Impact Finance Initiative will work on key issues that will drive the exponential growth of the field, including: building public data sets; conducting rigorous data analyses of risk, return and impact; exploiting new technologies; and enhancing public policy.