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The Promise of Social Impact Bonds: A Discussion with the UK Minister for Civil Society

With the August 2012 announcement of an agreement in New York City to reduce recidivism among adolescent boys at Rikers Island, Social Impact Bonds officially arrived on American shores. One of the most talked-about social innovations in recent years, Social Impact Bonds are a financing tool for social programs that simultaneously leverage the resources of the private and philanthropic sectors, provide steady funding streams for high-performing social service organizations, and enable government agencies to pay only for real, measurable improvements in social outcomes. The Social Impact Bond concept originated in the United Kingdom, where an ecosystem of organizations has sprung up since the first deal was signed in 2010. The UK Cabinet Office runs a Centre for Social Impact Bonds as well as a Social Outcomes Fund designed to help finance multi-agency Social Impact Bonds transactions.

Hudson Institute’s Bradley Center for Philanthropy and Civic Renewal and the Center for American Progress were pleased to welcome the UK Minister for Civil Society, Nick Hurd. The Minister offered remarks on the British experience with Social Impact Bonds, and engaged in conversation with William Schambra and the audience.

3:15 p.m.

3:30 p.m.
Jitinder Kohli, Senior Fellow, Center for American Progress

Nick Hurd MP, Minister for Civil Society

William Schambra, Director, Bradley Center for Philanthropy and Civic Renewal, Hudson Institute

4:30 p.m.

Social Impact Bonds and the Center for American Progress

The Center for American Progress published the first think tank report on Social Impact Bonds in the United States in February 2011 as part of the Doing What Works project, an economic policy initiative aimed at finding smart, evidence-based solutions to help the government do more with less. Since then, CAP has been a thought leader on explaining the Social Impact Bond concept to a diverse set of audiences and on researching the public policy approaches necessary to enable and support the development and implementation of Social Impact Bonds in the United States.

Click here to read the latest research by the Center for American Progress on Social Impact Bonds.

Social Impact Bonds and the Hudson Institute

The Bradley Center for Philanthropy and Civic Renewal’s monthly panel discussions highlight innovative approaches and methodologies currently being used in the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors. To start off 2013, the Center hosted a panel discussion on Social Impact Bonds to discuss the current programs underway in Peterborough and New York City, and to examine the future potential of SIBs to finance important social services that cash-strapped cities and states are unable to fund through traditional means. As more Social Impact Bonds are put in place, the Bradley Center hopes to continue bringing together policymakers and those working in the field to examine the important lessons that have been learned in the early implementation of SIBs and to share best practices.

Click here to read a transcript of the Bradley Center for Philanthropy and Civic Renewal’s recent panel discussion on Social Impact Bonds.

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