Transparency in impact performance continues to be a key challenge facing the blended finance and impact investing industry. In an effort to address this gap, the GIIN is offering Evaluating Impact Performance. This report presents a new approach for rigorously comparing impact results among investments within a sector, marking an important first step in enabling investors to make these comparisons in a meaningful and transparent way. As the industry’s first collaborative effort to create a clear, thorough approach to comparing impact results, this study paves the way for impact performance data to parallel financial performance data in investment-decision making.
In this first installment, the report aggregates investment-level data to demonstrate the comparability of impact results within the clean energy sector. Specifically, this research effort addressed: 1) whether it is possible to aggregate and compare impact performance data to generate insights, and 2) if so, what social and environmental results are associated with impact investors’ activity?
Impact investments can be rigorously compared based on impact. As this effort continues to scale, impact considerations can and should be integrated more fully into investment screening, diligence, and management. Investments can be evaluated based on their impact and their impact performance can be managed.
Context is critical to interpreting impact results in a robust and reliable way. Impact performance varies based on impact objectives, target stakeholders, geography, product or service, and investment features of the investment. In order to compare results in a meaningful way, this context is woven into the approach.