Bretton Woods II is harnessing the talent and resources of The World Bank, Yale University, and specialized consultancies including Northfield and LeapYear to generate analytic insights that will inform the social impact investment decisions of large asset holders.
- Key Performance Indicator: The ability to use Bretton Woods II analytics and technology to provide asset holders with accurate insights on what types of investments have the highest probability of mitigating key long-term risks and generating progress toward development goals.
- Key Analytics Goals: Developing an analytic platform to determine what types of social impact investments generate the greatest reductions in volatility.
- Delivery Target: Beta platform operational by September 2016; full functionality by March 2017.
The project is led by Jeff Leitner, a Bretton Woods II Fellow at New America, in partnership with OECD, GreenHouse and the University of Southern California.
Advocacy to advance the Bretton Woods II agenda is focused on two primary messages: first, asset holders can improve their risk-adjusted returns and support progress toward the SDGs by investing in efforts that address root causes of volatility. Second, governments can encourage investment in development and social impact through tax and regulatory reforms. Bretton Woods II has already produced a series of significant advocacy accomplishments.
- Polling of sovereign wealth funds that have examined the Bretton Woods II initiative show that 80 percent of the funds believe they can adopt its model for social impact investing without sacrificing risk-adjusted returns.
- In November 2015, U.S. Department of Labor announced major rule changes that will, for the first time, allow pension funds to consider social impact, governance, and environmental factors when allocating assets.
- The work of Bretton Woods II has been featured at the flagship event of the World Bank’s Spring Meetings together with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and World Bank President Jim Kim, the Global Citizen concert in front of a live audience of 250,000, and the United Nations Addis Conference on Financing for Development.
Beginning in February, the Embassy of Singapore and other partners will launch a series of high-level dinners and events to introduce the Bretton Woods II business model to a broader audience of asset holders and policymakers. New America is also coordinating advocacy efforts among partner organizations to influence asset holders and policymakers. For example, the ONE Campaign plans to leverage its 100,000-member campus network as part of a broader strategy to persuade university endowments to adopt Bretton Woods II principles when allocating assets.
- Key Advocacy Goals: Secure support for the Bretton Woods II agenda from asset holders and policymakers.
- Key Performance Indicators: 1) Secure commitments from asset holders with at least $20 billion AUM to invest at least 1% of assets in social impact. 2) Secure targeted reforms from at least one legislative body or executive agency.
- Delivery Target: September 2016.
Initiative Architecture & Governance
Bretton Woods II works with a broad range of institutional partners. Together, they use three primary structures to mobilize expertise, resources, and analytic capabilities to support the initiative.
- New America hosts the Bretton Woods II initiative. The organization is an incubator for ideas that advance prosperity and purpose in the digital age. New America is headquartered in Washington, DC with satellite offices in New York and San Francisco. Eric Schmidt, the Executive Chairman of Google, heads its board.
- The Bretton Woods II Advisory Council is comprised of leading figures from the fields of finance, philanthropy, and social impact. The Council holds a key role in shaping the initiative’s strategic vision. Council Members convene electronically once every six weeks and take part in high-level engagements with large asset holders and policymakers in support of the Bretton Woods II agenda.
- Working Groups focus on specific tasks related to analytics, advocacy, and finance. They provide a framework for Bretton Woods II to mobilize critical expertise from the firms, foundations, and research institutions. Members convene electronically monthly and as needed to work together on predefined projects and advocacy priorities.
Bretton Woods II anticipates utilizing a tiered subscription- and membership-based model to provide a sustainable source of social impact analytics and advocacy for large asset holders. The initiative will make aggregated information widely available, while providing advanced, fee-based analytics to fund its operations. The initiative will use the data it develops to drive ongoing policy engagement with the goal of spurring more large-scale investment in the future of humankind.