The 2015 Irish Impact Social Entrepreneurship Conference was an immense success! Students, faculty, and entrepreneurs from around the country came to learn more about impact investing from institutional investors, private equity and social enterprise funders, social entrepreneurs and many other amazing practitioners.
The Keynote speaker for the conference this year was Andi Phillips, a vice president in the Urban Investment Group at Goldman Sachs. Impact investing has the power to drive worldwide social change, and Andi has seen this firsthand through the firm's impact investing business focused on community development, social impact bonds and financing for small businesses.
Since 2001 this Goldman Sachs' impact investing business has committed more than $4 billion to underserved communities across the United States, including New York, New Orleans, Newark, Camden, Detroit, Memphis, Chicago, Boston and Salt Lake City.
PANELS AND WORKSHOPS
Here are just a few of the other numerous panels and discussions that were held during the conference:
-A case study featuring Impact Engine: Addressing the Social Entrepreneurship Ecosystem Needs. Impact Engine discussed their process and shared successes and challenges they’ve faced trying to build a social entrepreneurship and impact-investing ecosystem
-Workshop: Students Bridging the Investing Gap. This panel featured impact investing at the university level, with speakers from the University of Michigan, University of Utah, and Columbia University, and strived to answer the question-what are the challenges student-led funds face from human resources management to deal flow to gauging impact?
-Panel: Public, INGO, and Private Partnerships in Impact Investing. Representatives from USAID, The Clinton Foundation, Open Road Alliance and Catholic Relief Services discussed impact investing innovations in the public and international NG sectors.
-Plenary Panel: Myth or Mythical? Impact-First vs. Finance-First Investing. Panelists discussed and debated the reported tensions that exist between those striving for impact versus those striving for a return.
EXPERTS IN THE SOCIAL ENTERPRISE AND IMPACT INVESTING FIELDS
Speakers for the panels and discussions included:
-Mike Belinksy, a consultant at The Bridgespan Group and founding partner of Instiglio, a nonprofit organization that works on results-based financing programs and social impact bonds in international development.
-Laura Broderick, COO at Verb, a social enterprise that runs global social innovation competitions that tap into the power of social entrepreneurs in order to tackle the world’s most pressing problems.
-Elizabeth Coston, Director of Operations & Investor Relations at Impact Engine, where she is responsible for oversight of the fund’s processes, policies, and procedures.
-Paul Brown, professor at the David Eccles School of Business at The University of Utah where he teaches courses in impact investing, entrepreneurship, innovation, the foundations of business thought, and other topics.
-Kevin Jones, creator of Social Capital Markets, a network of investors, entrepreneurs, and social impact leaders who strive to meet at the intersection of money and meaning.
For a full list of speakers for the Irish Impact Social Entrepreneurship Conference 2015, look to the pdf links below!