News

Budd Hall Receives Distinguished Engaged Scholar Award

We join colleagues around the world in congratulating Budd Hall, recipient of the 2021 Hiram E. Fitzgerald Distinguished Engaged Scholar Award.  A driving force for half a century in transformative scholarship and community-campus partnerships for a better world, Dr. Hall holds, with Dr. Rajesh Tandon, the UNESCO Chair in Community-Based Research and Social Responsibility in…(Read…

Preparing the Evaluation Field for Evaluators of Colour

Writing for the American Evaluation Association’s AEA 365 blog platform, Wanda Casillas, Sahiti Bhaskara, and Jack Serna argue that, among a range of challenges in truly diversifying the evaluation field, two issues must be addressed. “First is the challenge of cultural traditions among Western social scientists and researchers that do not accept or understand the value…(Read…

For Labour to be Genuinely Valued, We All Have Work to Do

Writing on Labour Day 2021, Aspen Institute Vice President Maureen Conway argues that, in America,: “Business leaders have choices, and they can choose to improve the quality of work. It’s time for employers to build better business models – ensuring workers are treated with respect and that they receive the pay, benefits, and workplace protections they deserve.”…(Read…

On Becoming an Anti-Human-Trafficking Advocate

Writing in Women in Foreign Policy, Senior Associate of the firm, Kizzann Sammy, shares her journey in international development from an early focus on poverty reduction to her current strong commitment to anti-human-trafficking advocacy. To her readers, she writes: “I encourage you to find a space for your voice in this area of human security…(Read…

Is the ESG Trend Bypassing Most of the Capital Market?

Writing in Canada’s Globe and Mail, thought leaders Christopher Pinney and Ed Waitzer argue that governments must act in quickly and decisively to institute effective incentives and disincentives to move to accountable net-zero strategies large companies financed by debt and operating outside regulated stock exchanges. “There is no historical precedent for the market coordination of…(Read…

Designing Evaluations of Blended Finance Instruments

A new OECD working paper takes a pluralist and pragmatic approach to the design of evaluations of blended finance instruments at the front-end of the results chain–particularly related to mobilization and leverage, additionality, and concessionality–and for downstream results, as well. Prepared by a team from DEval, the German Institute for Development Evaluation, and drawing on…(Read…

Stopping the Anti-LGBTQ+ Hate Bill in Ghana

After months of an anti-LGBTQ+ hate campaign in Ghana, the country’s Parliament is debating a bill that would severely criminalize not only the LGBTQ+ community but also anyone who advocates for their rights. The LGBTQ+ community in Ghana is tiny and is not a threat to any institutional interest, but hyper-conservative political and religious ideologues…(Read…

Ted Jackson Wins RIA Individual Leadership Award

On June 7, 2021, at its annual conference, the Responsible Investment Association announced the winners of its 2021 awards competition. Ted Jackson, President of E.T. Jackson and Associates Ltd., received the RIA Individual Leadership Award in recognition of the quality and innovation of the firm’s evaluation in 2019-2020 of the Convergence Blended Finance Platform. “A…(Read…

Mastercard Foundation Announces $1.3B for African Centres for Disease Control

On June 8, 2021, The Mastercard Foundation, with current assets of nearly $40B, announced it would deploy $1.3B over the next three years to support the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) to expand the availability of affordable vaccines on the continent and bolster Africa’s response to the pandemic. The Foundation notes…(Read…

“Water is life”: Sulley Gariba, 1958-2021

“Water is life,” he often said.  On April 27, 2021, our dear friend and colleague, Dr. Sulley Gariba, passed away due to complications from Covid-19.  Diplomat, philanthropy executive, policy advisor, evaluator and mentor, Dr. Gariba catalyzed innovation for impact in everything he did.  The tributes to his excellence and leadership have flowed in, like cascading,…(Read…

OECD-UNDP Impact Standards for Financing Sustainable Development

On May 26, 2021, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and the United Nations Development Program launched their new joint Impact Standards for Financing Sustainable Development. These standards focus on strategy, management approach, transparency and governance and can be applied to development finance, bonds, private equity funds, and enterprises. For the full standards report,…(Read…

CDC Group Releases New Study on Investment and Poverty Reduction

The CDC Group, the UK’s development finance institution, has released a new report examining the relationship between investment and poverty reduction in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. Authored by Gregory Thwaites and Paddy Carter, and employing a series of statistical regressions, the study “shows that higher rates of private investment are associated with faster poverty…(Read…

ODI Publishes New Report on Development Finance Institutions

The Overseas Development Institute has published a new report, authored by Samantha Attridge and Matthew Gouett, on the current challenges and opportunities faced by bilateral and multilateral development finance institutions (DFIs) investing for sustainable development in developing countries. Ms. Attridge observes: “DFIs are powerful development actors but they are at a critical juncture. They are…(Read…

Impact Investors Need to Share Power as Well as Capital

Writing in the Stanford Social Innovation Review, Alyssa Ely and Denise Hearn argue that: “Investors and funders must abandon the idea that capital alone is sufficient to transform inequitable systems. They must interrogate the power dynamics underlying their decisions and operations to meet the complex challenges of racial, gender, and economic inequality, moving from a…(Read…

Impact Investing Handbook Authors on Gender Lens Investing

On March 23, 2021, Paul Herman and Nigel Lake hosted an ESGX episode on gender lens investing featuring authors on GLI in the new Global Handbook of Impact Investing edited by Elsa de Morais Sarmento and Paul Herman. The panel for this session included Angelica Rotondaro, Carmen Correa, and Maria Cavalcanti; Kristin Hull, Michael Ngoasong and Richmond Lamptey,…(Read…

Measuring the Social Impact of Business in South Africa

South African colleague Dr. Neissan Besharati has published an article in that country’s Business Day arguing for more rigorous monitoring and evaluation of community social investment initiatives funded by major corporations. While CSI is a source of significant funding for South African communities, and a number of companies are best-practice leaders in assessing the performance…(Read…

Africa’s Digital Revolution” Promise and Peril

In his new piece for the Brookings Institution on technology in Africa, Nathaniel Allen writes that: “Across the African continent, the relentless spread of networks, sensors, artificial intelligence, and automation is driving a revolution to an unknown destination.”  For states to optimize the benefits and manage the risks of this digital revolution for their citizens,…(Read…

Community Campus Engage Canada

Community Campus Engage Canada, hosted at the Trent Centre for Community-Based Education in Haliburton County, Ontario, and affiliated with Trent University, has begun to roll out its programming activities. For CCEC: “Community-campus engagement (CCE) happens when communities and universities/colleges address critical community issues through collaborative research, learning and creative projects.” Incubated by the seven-year, SSHRC-funded…(Read…

Canadian Experience in Impact Investing in Emerging Markets

In January, in Zoom presentations organized by Global Affairs Canada to impact investing stakeholders in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, Dr. Ted Jackson, President of E.T. Jackson and Associates, summarized lessons from Canadian experiences in emerging markets, which include: combining awareness-building and early-stage financing through television and other media, deepening the business case for…(Read…

Bill Gates on How to Avoid A Climate Disaster

In an excerpt from his new book, “How to Avoid a Climate Disaster”, Bill Gates exhorts governments to boldly and ambitiously use all the policy tools at their disposal, urgently. Reviewing experiences with renewable energy, he writes: “The point of these stories is not that solar and wind are the answer to all our electricity…(Read…

The Bipartisan Alliance that Secured the US Election

In a riveting piece of investigative journalism, Molly Ball at Time Magazine has written the history of the secret, bipartisan alliance involving business, labour, Democrats, Republicans, voter registration groups, and more that worked behind the scenes to ensure that the US presidential election was held freely and fairly and that its results were maintained. She…(Read…

Boards are Obstructing ESG–at Their Own Peril

Writing in the Harvard Business Review, Tensie Whelan underscores the lack of commitment to and expertise in analyzing and action on material ESG issues among corporate boards.  She writes: “Ensuring good performance on material ESG issues is not only a board’s fiduciary duty, important to investors and the public, and supportive of long-term strong financial…(Read…

Doing No Harm With Technology in Evaluation

Posting at AEA365, the American Evaluation Association’s blog site, Antony Maikuri, Veronica Olazabal and Vidhya Shanker make the case for evaluators supporting strategies and tools for digital decolonization, data sovereignty and data ethics in their work. “Evaluators can distinguish among the types of value that data can produce, and for whom,” write the authors. “These types range…(Read…

Canadian Evaluation Leader John Mayne’s Legacy

Members of the international evaluation field were saddened to learn of the passing of John Mayne, a Canadian leader known for his open and thoughtful approach, as Patricia Rogers of Better Evaluation has underscored, to continuously improving evaluation theory and practice.  In an excellent overview of John’s work, Dr. Rogers highlights his legacy in three…(Read…

Blended Finance, Gender Equality and Climate Change

In early November 2020, the Convergence Blended Finance Platform published a Brief entitled How can blended finance address the gendered impacts of climate change? As Senior Associate Andrew Apampa writes, of 63 blended finance transactions at the gender-climate nexus, most have been structured through funds and companies and have focused on clean energy, particularly renewable…(Read…

The Case for a T-12 Group of Techno-Democracies

To provide a vehicle for cooperation on many crucial issues clustered around technology, Jared Cohen and Fontaine, writing in Foreign Affairs, make the case for a new global governance body, the T-12 group of techno-democracies. Also aimed at diluting the influence of techno-autocracies, particularly China and Russia, the T-12 would include the US, UK, France,…(Read…

Making Green Infrastructure Gender Equal

In a new opinion piece in The Hill Times, Ted Jackson argues that the $10-billion growth plan of the Canadian Infrastructure Bank, which is very green, should also be gender equal. He argues that the gender ambition framework of the multilateral Private Infrastructure Development Group, and the Government of Canada’s own Gender-Based Analysis Plus, are…(Read…

OECD Calls for Better ESG Reporting

On September 29, 2020, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OIECD) released its latest business outlook report on the theme of sustainable and resilient capital.  While the appetite for environmental, social and governance (ESG) reporting has grown across the world, there is still much work to be done.  “Current market practices,” the report notes,…(Read…

Canadian Companies Must Do Better on Climate Disclosure

A recent article in the Globe and Mail pointed to the unevenness of Canadian corporate reporting on sustainability performance and climate risk. While some firms use the indicators of the Global Reporting Initiative to guide their reporting, others use those of the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board. However, the authors suggest that a third framework, that…(Read…

For a Just and Impact-Led Recovery: A Leaders’ Declaration

On September 16, 2020, a declaration signed by 250 leaders in business, philanthropy, government and academia called for environmental and social impact to be at the heart of post-pandemic economic recovery. E.T. Jackson is proud to be among the signatory organizations. To read this open letter, published in Barron’s, click here

Converting Government Assets into Public-Interest Foundations

Longtime non-profit sector scholar Lester Salamon has written an article in the fall 2020 issue of the Stanford Social Innovation Review showing the power of converting government assets generated through large-scale corporate fines and privatizations into public-interest foundations. He cites, among others, the Volkswagon Foundation in Germany, and the King Baudouin Foundation in Belgium, as…(Read…

Call for Papers on Gender Lens Investing in Emerging Markets

Contributions of papers are invited for a special issue of the Journal of Sustainable Finance and Investment on Growing Gender Lens Investing in Emerging Markets.  Co-editors Edward Jackson and Carolina Robino are seeking a wide range of papers, from critical theory-building to practice-based case studies. All papers will be double-blind peer reviewed.  For the full…(Read…

The Global Handbook of Impact Investing

The new Global Handbook of Impact Investing, edited by Elsa de Morais Sarmento and R. Paul Herman, will be published later this year by Wiley.  With 30 chapters by leading practitioners in the field, the book’s contributions focus on integrating impact into investment decision-making, impact measurement and reporting and gender lens investing, among many other…(Read…

A Bridge to the Future

Mapping programs in four African countries – Ethiopia, Nigeria, Uganda and Kenya – World University Service of Canada has produced a new report: A Bridge to the Future: From Higher Education to Employment for Displaced Youth in Africa.  Commissioned by the Mastercard Foundation, the findings of the report will inform the future planning of the…(Read…