The Intentional Endowments Network will host a Community Impact Investing Roundtable focused on opportunities for place-based investing. The Roundtable will convene endowment and foundation decision-makers and other stakeholders interested in enhancing their leadership on sustainable investing.

Date: Monday, June 11, 2018

Time: 1:00 - 6:30 pm

Location: The Boston Foundation, 75 Arlington Street #1000, Boston, MA

Size: ~40-50 participants 

Theme: Community Impact Investing – This Roundtable event will explore a variety of community investment strategies, drawing on the experience of community foundations, philanthropic foundations, and endowments as well as investment managers and consultants. It will include a focus on practical approaches for higher education endowments to integrate community impact investing strategies in their portfolios. US SIF defines a “community investment” as having the following three core characteristics:

  1. A focus on marginalized areas or communities that conventional market activity does not reach (in practice, low-income neighborhoods or regions, communities of color, and underserved geographic regions such as rural communities);
  2. A focus on enabling the delivery of explicit social benefits (affordable housing, economic development, provision of needed goods and services at affordable rates, healthier outcomes) to those areas or communities; and
  3. A financial product available for investment that can be managed in terms of risk and return.*

As colleges and universities are often anchor institutions in their communities, the concept of place-based impact investing is a compelling prospect. In addition to generating financial return for the endowment, such investments have the potential for many ancillary benefits. Because they support a more prosperous and thriving local neighborhood they can help improve community relationships, lower crime rates, enhance safety, and attract students, faculty, and staff.  

Audience: Senior administrators, trustees, and endowment/foundation staff from colleges and universities, community foundations, and other investor groups, as well as sustainable investment experts from investment management firms, advisory firms, non-profits, and other relevant stakeholders. The program will be designed primarily for participants who are interested in pursuing sustainable investment strategies on some level and looking to learn about community investment opportunities and how best to implement or advance such strategies.

Format: The format will be highly interactive, with brief presentations from expert speakers or panels to deliver content and seed conversation, integrated with significant time spent in small-group dialogue sessions at round tables.

Program design: Program content will be driven by responses from participants on what their key questions are on these topics at the time, and what they hope to get out of the event. The agenda will be designed to build through the afternoon to deliver necessary content, facilitate peer-to-peer information sharing and learning, and result in pragmatic, actionable outcomes for participants to take back to their institutional roles. Depending on participant feedback, potential topics may include:

  • The state of the field in terms of endowment and foundation-ready community investment opportunities
  • Proven models for endowments and foundations to earn a financial return while generating measurable positive impact in their local communities
  • Discussions of themes and outcomes, e.g., jobs, affordable housing, innovation, clean energy 
  • Strategies for leveraging state and federal incentives, tax-equity partners, etc.
  • Enhancing peer-to-peer support and learning across institutions among trustees, endowment and foundation staff and senior administrators


This event is generously sponsored by:


Convening Sponsor:

Supporting Sponsors:






* US SIF, Initiative for Responsible Investment, and Milken Institute (2013). “Expanding the Market for Community Investment in the United States.”




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