Giving Compass’ Take:
• The author explores gender-lens investing strategies that make sense in 2019 as this practice gains more momentum in the impact investing world.
• How will gender-lens investing impact the lives of women?
• Read about how to build a gender-lens investment strategy.
After a decades-long outcry for data proving that gender-smart investing makes financial sense, today reams of evidence show that including women in government leads to more stable societies, educating women creates stronger communities, including women on company boards leads to better organizational performance, and access to contraceptives contributes to a stable economy.
Once viewed as a niche strategy, gender-lens investments are emerging as an important source of funding for organizations, products, and services that benefit women.
But while gender-lens investing has enormous momentum, there is more work to do, especially in structuring organizational leadership to include all women. Here are four major themes that should be at the front of gender-lens investors’ minds in 2019.
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- The Time Is Now According to the latest report by the gender-lens investment accelerator Catalyst at Large and investment advisor Veris Wealth Partners, assets under management with a gender-lens mandate grew 85 percent in the 12 months prior to July 2018, as global investors added more than $1 billion to a range of gender-smart strategies.
- Impact Investing Is Intersectional As gender-smart investing expands, we must make sure that the investing world’s growing focus on women does not leave behind women of color. For example, women and people of color receive only 0.2 percent of venture funding, according to a new report by #ProjectDiane. If we’re not conscious of this imbalance and the biases that have created it, we will continue to lock many people out of opportunities.
- Account for Gender in All Decision-Making To make the systemic changes we need to achieve gender equality, investors and other stakeholders must ensure that women are included in every stage of organizational decision-making.
- Data Is Nothing Without Action Despite all the data showing its potential, gender-lens investing is usually a side session at investing and social impact conferences—and the attendees are mostly women.
Read the full article about gender-lens investing strategies by Emilie Cortes at Stanford Social Innovation Review
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